If That’s All There Is, playing in the Traverse 2, is a little surreal ditty that manages to raise much mirth, even if it doesn’t all click together or completely make sense. Through four characters, we see a chronicle of events that lead up to the fateful opening moment of the play, where we see the groom shot during his wedding speech.
And the four characters are each a lot of fun. We have the neurotic wife-to-be, who is preoccupied with wedding dresses, veils, cakes and confetti. We have a protective husband-to-be, whose focus seems to be on getting a swing dance number right and in supplying revealing information about his fiancée to a psychiatrist for a personality diagnosis. That psychiatrist is a jaded person who has heard all of the problems so many times that she is able to finish her clients’ thoughts for them. There is also an office intern who works with the anxious bride, who’s almost chained to a photocopying machine and made to write mind-numbing questionnaires.
Does it all make sense? Well, to a point. But that doesn’t really matter. What does matter is the energy and creativity that is presented, and in this department one is hard to find fault. All three actors, Lucinka Eisler, Giulia Innocenti and Ben Lewis, manage to play heightened comedy well. In a way, each character exists more as a foil for the other characters to play off of than as fully-fleshed individuals the audience can emotionally invest in.
Is it a great production? Maybe not. But it really did make me laugh, quite loudly at times, and it has such a good-natured air that I find it almost irresistible. So if you attend If That’s All There Is, turn your brain off, sit back and enjoy yourself.
Playing at the Traverse at different times until August 30.
Filed under: Edinburgh Festival 2009 |