Theatre review: Madame George by Keir McAllister, Gilded Balloon Patter Hoose, Edinburgh

In dressing gown and pyjamas, Madame George isn’t the most glamorous of psychic mediums.

An unassuming but very smart play
An unassuming but very smart play

Madame George by Keir McAllister, Gilded Balloon Patter Hoose (Venue 24) * * *

She operates out of her front room, the same room her late mother practised her own psychic clinic from for many years, and her elderly neighbour Mister Doyle attends three times a week to commune with his departed wife Brenda.

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Even though, as we witness while Madame George appears to be channelling Brenda’s spirit, all his wife wants to do is harangue him about eating his Marks & Spencer meal deal profiteroles on the bus.

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With a neat twist in the tale which locks the power dynamics of the piece into place, this is an unassuming but very smart play which explores the hinterlands of delusion to find the point at which selfish lies become necessary defence against the ills of the world.

Until 26 August.