Lovecraft (Not the Sex Shop in Cardiff)



Summerhall, Edinburgh

Sporting one of the most unforgettable titles of the festival, Lovecraft (Not the Sex Shop in Cardiff) is the creation of Carys Eleri. She swaggers into Summerhall’s Red Lecture Theatre from behind the audience, announcing into a microphone that she is the goddess of love and that she is here to spread the word.

I’ll admit that at first I don’t think I’m going to like this very much but, happily, I’m wrong. Eleri’s vivacious personality soon wins me over and I start to enjoy her witty and enthusiastically presented songs, which range in style from hip-hop to power ballad and all points in between. It helps that she has a terrific singing voice and the kind of bubbly personality that you can’t help but like.

She promptly takes us on a picaresque journey through her (mostly disastrous) love life. She’s clearly done some research here, concentrating on the science of human attraction. Her subjects include endorphins, neuro-transmitters and dopamine and, if that all sounds a bit technical, don’t worry, because these bits are accompanied by colourful and amusing animations that cleverly illustrate what she’s talking about.

The audience is also treated to a ‘cwtch’ apiece (if you’re not Welsh, you’ll need to see the show to find out exactly what that is) and a taste of some very nice dairy and nut-free chocolate, which let’s face it, is not something you’ll get at many Fringe shows.

Those looking for a bit of light relief from the more serious fare on offer at the Fringe could do a lot worse than head up to Summerhall to catch this funny and engaging show. Unless you’re made of stone, you’ll have a really good time.

4 stars

Philip Caveney


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