There are echoes of a rogue Lord Byron in this interpretation of the life of the young Winston Churchill. Born into the aristocracy, well-lettered, and off on wild escapades abroad, this breed of inspirational thinkers provides rich material for theatre. In this production from Fol Espoir, a wiry Winston, war correspondent during the Boer War, troops boldly around South Africa, finding himself in increasingly dire straits and recounting his (mostly danger-filled) capers in the semi-darkness to an elusive ‘Ratty’. Sharp, wild-eyed and – dare we say audacious – Freddie Machin’s performance is first-rate, and a simple stage set is put to excellent use. A stiff upper lip and an incurable sense of adventure turn this gem of new writing into a terrific piece of theatre.
Pleasance Courtyard, 1-27 Aug (not 8, 15, 22), 2.45pm.
tw rating 5/5 | [Colette M Talbot]