The Abode (rating 5/5)
In these times of tension over gender and race, the quest for equality and social justice has become a recurring theme in the arts as much as it has in politics.
The Fringe has regularly featured performances dealing with prejudice and hate, but perhaps they take on a greater resonance at a time when the most powerful man on earth is mistrusted for his attitude towards neighbouring nations and to women.
Following the already unsettling allegations over film producer Harvey Weinstein’s alleged behaviour, there are deep concerns over who we can trust and who we should fear.
Scottish playwright Davey Anderson’s new play The Abode creates a fantasy realm of oppressed white American men which draws young Samuel into its Alt-Right movement.
Samuel feels like an outsider, undervalued by his country and unable to even get himself a girl. That is until the Trolls invite him into their secret community with its belief that white is right, women are trash and hate gives strength.
Now his sister Wendy faces a choice – join the Troll Hunters or court the Troll King, infiltrating his retro-futurist underworld in a bid to rescue her brother.
This is an aggressive, fast-paced tale that tears at the flesh of an establishment harbouring an undercurrent of racism, mysogyny and hate, and showing how vulnerable young men can be enticed into becoming followers of alternative movements.
Twelve actors from Pepperdine Scotland, a cultural and artistic exchange, deliver a strident and disturbing vision of an ugly, warped world in a gripping piece of theatre.
Anderson and Pepperdine Scotland are working with Hope not hate during the Fringe to highlight the growing presence of racist, fascist, sometimes violent, individuals and groups in this country. For those moved to understand more about the message this play is the perfect starting point.
The Abode, Underbelly, daily until 16 August