Vivienne Acheampong

Edfest Bouquets 2016




It’s been another amazing August for us at Bouquets & Brickbats. We’re exhausted after a month of non-stop theatre and comedy! We have seen some absolutely fantastic stuff, covering a huge range of ideas. Here’s our pick of the best we’ve seen at this year’s Fringe:

Drama Bouquets

  1. Neontopia / Wales Millennium Centre – A Good Clean Heart by Alun Saunders
  2. Aurora Nova – The Blind Date Project by Bojana Novakovic
  3. Rainbow Class by Vivienne Acheampong
  4. Gaggle Babble / National Theatre Wales – Wonderman by Daf James
  5. Something for the Weekend – Royal Vauxhall by Desmond O’Connor

Monologue Bouquets

  1. NJC Productions – The Way the City Ate the Stars by Will Greenway
  2. George Dillon – Stunning the Punters (& Other Stories) by Berkoff, Sproat and Dostoevsky
  3. Lorenzo Novani – Cracked Tiles by Lorenzo Novani
  4. Impi Theatre Company – The South Afreakins by Robyn Paterson
  5. Berk’s Nest – Vaudeville by Tom Neenan

Stand-up Comedy Bouquets

  1. Bridget Christie – Mortal
  2. Sarah Kendall – Shaken 
  3. Loyiso Gola – Dude, Where’s My Lion?
  4. Garrett Millerick – The Dreams Stuff is Made Of
  5. John Robertson – Arena Spectacular

‘Ones to Watch Out For’ Bouquets

  1. Phosporos Theatre – Dear Home Office
  2. Chris Dugdale – Full Circle
  3. Flabbergast Theatre – Tatterdemalion
  4. Teateri – Evil by Jesper Arin
  5. Amy Howerska – Smashcat

Rainbow Class



Assembly Hall, Edinburgh

Wow. This is a hidden gem of a show if ever I saw one, and well-deserving of a bigger audience than tonight’s meagre crowd. Maybe it’s the title that’s uninspiring and failing to draw the punters? It’s certainly not the performance.

Because Vivienne Acheampong can REALLY act. This is a one-woman show that packs a heavy punch: it’s a sharp and witty piece that engages right from the very start. We’re in Tiddlesworth Primary School, where we meet a whole host of characters: there’s Miss Marshall, the pregnant teacher whose vocation means she has no life outside her job; Ty’Quan, the challenging student with ambitions to make it as a rapper; Sheila, the casually racist lunchtime supervisor, who misses the way things used to be. Acheampong embodies each one effortlessly; this is clever, sly, insightful stuff, and it’s beautifully done. We’re reduced to helpless laughter when a terrifying supply teacher forces us to take part in a recorder lesson, and I’m in floods of tears when Acheampong ends the piece with a heartfelt poem about the state of education in England today, and how it lets our children down (this has a particular resonance for me, as I’ve just quit teaching after twenty-two years because of the very issues that she highlights here).

There’s real talent at play in this show, and it merits a wide audience. Miss it, and you really will miss out.

5 stars

Susan Singfield