In a way, The Grind Show was born here. Founder members of the TBA Collaborative, filled with a desire to create original, compelling drama, visited the Edinburgh Fringe in 2007. They left, inspired by what they had seen and went home to work on creating The Grind Show, a startling and innovative piece of contemporary physical theatre which receives its world premiere at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe.
Featuring a driven and motivated ensemble of current and postgraduate students from the University of Washington, The Grind Show takes place on the peripherary of a strange, freakish circus, amongst its constantly ‘grinding’ sideshow acts. An innocent child adrift finds himself in the midst of this surreal, nightmarish troupe and is forced to make a decision that will impact the rest of his life.
Physical and visually arresting, The Grind Show takes its cues from a variety of commendable inpirational sources, with the spirits of Tim Burton, David Lynch and Neil Gaiman watching from the ringside. However, it is to TBA Collaborative’s credit that their show looks unmistakably their own and promises to be a uniquely memorable experience that encapsulates the true feeling of Fringe theatre.
In a programme that’s increasingly becoming full of big-name comedy acts and easy crowd-pullers, it’s reassuring to know that there are groups like TBA Collaborative with a vision and passion that is driven by artistic expression. For that alone, they deserve your attention – the fact they are bringing a work as original and interesting as The Grind Show is almost a bonus.
So – what circus act would you perform for eternity?
The Grind Show runs from 5th to 31st August (not 17th) at the C Venues, Chambers Street, various prices from £7.50.
Review to follow on 14th August.