Review: I Got Superpowers for my Birthday

Ethan, William and Fiona are about as different as three almost-teens can be.  The only thing they have in common is that tomorrow is their birthday.  And they’ve just discovered they have superpowers.  Which is lucky because someone needs to protect the world from the Darkness, an evil overlord with plans to turn everything to ice.  Join our three heroes on an epic quest to save the planet in this brand new play from award-winning writer Katie Douglas.

Katie Douglas and Paines Plough have created a great piece of child-friendly and adult enjoyable theatre with I Got Superpowers for my Birthday.  Based on this play, I can see why the Guardian described them as, “the lifeblood of the UK’s theatre ecosystem.”  The script is tight, the production very professional, with the lights and the sound adding to what happens on stage.  The cast – Remy Beasley, Richard Corgan and Andy Rush – are great on stage, appearing as several characters during the play.  Not only were they convincing as thirteen-year-olds, but they are well able to talk to children and engage with them.  The three actors went round the audience and talked to every child there from what I could tell.  They asked my daughter what superpower she would pick and explained that some of the show was just a little scary, which the Darkness is.  Having said that, there is nothing in the play that would give an average five-year-old trouble or later nightmares.  The conversation we had with Remy Beasley was relaxed and never felt rushed or routine.

On stage, the three actors work well together, playing their parents as well as the newly teenaged superpower wielders.  Not a word of the dialogue felt out of place or unnatural. Some of it I can even remember saying myself, or at least words to that effect any way.  The play runs for only forty-five minutes but it seemed longer as we watched their lives, both at home and school, change with the new powers.  The characters act like teenagers with strange powers would, they do daft things with them, although not necessarily bad or naughty.

Running along the accepted cliché of superhero team-ups and they don’t get on to start with but in the end they work together to win the day.  All of the characters Katie Douglas has created are believable and work well in the play.  I look forward to seeing more of her work and that of Paines Plough.

If you’re not in Edinburgh before the run’s last date, 21st of August, it is on tour throughout the UK.  Do go, they even give you a choice of stickers.  We’ve still got ours.

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About LothiansKen

I'm a middle classed kiddie, but I know where I stand.
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