Kopfrapers Syndrome: One Man and His Incredible Mi

Note: This review is from 2005

Review by Steve Bennett

This is a five-star script with a four-star performance in a three-star format.

It is not a show; it is a showcase... for the very considerable talents of Laura Solon.

As it comprises three or four minute, self-contained character monologues, it is impossible to tell if Laura can write a 60-minute or even 30-minute show. Writing brilliant short characterisations (which these are) is no guarantee for structuring longer pieces.

In the Fringe brochure, this show bafflingly describes itself as One Man and His Incredible Mind’ as if it was about living with a mental disability, as presented by a support group. In fact, it is  presented by TV producers Brown Eyed Boy – the people behind 3 Non Blondes  - at the increasingly important Holyrood Tavern venue. Both are very impressive at spotting new talent and they have scored another bullseye here.

Laura's characters range from an Australian in a wheelchair who thinks she is  possessed by the ghost of Princess Diana to a deranged American motivational  speaker.

Her scripts verge on being a collection of mini-masterpieces with  stand-out lines which remain in character: ‘You can have my yoghurt,  if you like. It's got spit in. It'll be like kissing me’. Or ‘There's  only one thing worse than being talked - about and that's Madrid’. Anyone who can rival or even top a line by Oscar Wilde is a talent to watch.

Some beautifully crafted one-liners included my favourite, done as a  throwaway in mid-sentence – ‘a dyslexic who fears the number 31’.

Laura Solon is not an Alan Bennett or Victoria Wood, but she is young, within sight of them and might yet rival them. She is an immensely talented writer with performance skills to match.

Review date: 1 Jan 2005
Reviewed by: Steve Bennett

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