Comedy review: Robert White: InstruMENTAL

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Edinburgh Festival Fringe: There is a frantic nervous energy about Robert White, which can make him hard to watch at times.

Gilded Balloon Teviot (Venue 14)


But in this autobiographical comic opera he lays bare the workings of his autistic brain – in a way which allows the audience to share his world.

The plot is a true story, which involves armed 
robbery, prison and coming out as gay – all told in ­rhyming couplets and accompanied by keyboard and sound effects.

Using a suitcase full of stuffed toys, a strait jacket and a trumpet, White careers through his tale, in a libretto full of television, movie and musical references.

The jokes are relentless, almost to a fault, and White carries us along with him, through this fantastical narrative, interpreted through his fantastical head.

Technical difficulties, which might be real or faked, add another layer to the ­performance and a further tricksiness to the script.

Eventually, through the medium of song, poetry, sound effects and trumpet White unravels the knots in his mind and moves towards acceptance. There is a real feeling of relief as you realise the circumstances of the story find a resolution.

If you want to see something brilliant, confusing and strange, you couldn’t do much better.

Until 27 August. Today 3:15pm.