The Argus: fringe_2011_logo_red_thumbAn anarchic retelling of Christopher Marlowe’s bloodthirsty gay tragedy Edward II, Constanza Hola’s play will not appeal to everyone.

The performers’ exaggerated makeup is a cross between Adam Ant and the 1980s gothic look, the strident voices and constant movement of the actors occasionally make it hard to hear the lines, and the tables that make up the set creak and lurch worryingly whenever the characters run up them.

However, if you feel that the suggestive use of cucumbers, a killer transvestite, a knicker-sniffing gimp and a Joanna Lumley-voiced conspirator add to the camp joy of a live performance, do go along to this future cult hit.

During a rambling first half involving dictatorial declaiming and jackbooted striding, Myriam (Elizabeth Bloom) and Beatriz (Lisa Depuis) are an unexpected delight. Improvising like pantomime Ugly Sisters, Depuis’s impromptu banter crosses Patsy Stone with Frank ’n’ Furter to hysterical effect.

The more emotional second half comes as a compelling contrast, with the expressive Sebastián Concha experiencing a pitiful emotional breakdown as Eduardo, the weak prince of the show’s title.

Despite the cast being twice the size of the audience, their energy level and physical intensity never falters: this surprisingly enjoyable show is one of the Fringe’s hidden gems.