It's so simple it's brilliant: you're putting together a graduation piece for a Theatre Studies class, so you decide to set it in an examination... hence A-Level Madness Paper One, this play's subtitle. Audience and company alike sit at desks, complete with papers, and eavesdrop on the candidate with a crush on his teacher, the nogoodnik who can't get it together, and the cleaner who walks in on the proceedings. Flashbacks grow to dominate the proceedings, however – and having the course teachers play 16-year-olds comes over less as egalitarian than as patronising. More fun could be had with the structure, but in its way this is more experimental than most theatre on offer on the Fringe.
Written for The Independent.
Copyright © Ian Shuttleworth; all rights reserved.
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