Theatre review: Class Mates

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Edinburgh Festival Fringe: “I’ve missed sugar craft and archery; I’m not missing Zumba,” says a woman in leopard print leggings.

theSpace on the Mile (Venue 39)

***

“I’ve missed sugar craft and archery; I’m not missing Zumba,” says a woman in leopard print leggings. Later, she’s there again, on crutches this time but still ready to go: “I’ll just do my top half; it’ll be like the Paralympics.”

There’s lots of amusing one-liners in this upbeat play about three recreational “evening” classes – fitness, ante-natal and craftwork – written by Anne-Marie Draycott and Charity Trimm and performed by a group of graduates from Edinburgh Napier and Queen Margaret University. It’s a world that’s not often seen on stage, but one that’s full of friendship and appealing to spend an hour in.

A pregnant businesswoman forms an unlikely relationship with a chip shop worker, a fashion blogger learns that trying to look “spontaneous and free” can sometimes be anything but, and two sides of an affair are shown in a refreshingly compassionate way, while connecting different story strands in a satisfying structural twist.

The writing and performances are strongest in the comic moments, and whenever anything more serious gets thrown in there’s a danger things become more melodramatic. A more consistent comic tone throughout feels like it would help – especially as this is clearly where the heart of this bright and bubbly play lies.

Until 25 August. Tomorrow 2:20pm.