The Element in the Room: A Radioactive Musical Comedy about the Death and Life of Marie Curie

John Hinton

Tangram Theatre Company

Pleasance Courtyard

From 05 August 2015 to 31 August 2015

Rating: ***

Review by Philip Fisher

John Hinton has already had success with shows about Albert Einstein and Charles Darwin and now turns his attention and unique presentational style to Marie Curie.

He has set himself a tricky task, since much of this show can sound like a chemistry lesson. While that shows impressive knowledge and facility with difficult material, it is not the stuff that Fringe shows are normally made of.

The remainder of the show tells the fascinating life story of Marie Curie and the radium that she discovered and which still saves lives today, though it cost many along the route to discovery and manufacture.

Her scientific efforts and fund-raising sacrifices together ensured that Marie Curie will be remembered forever.

The latter help to inject both comedy and drama into what otherwise might have been a dry hour, even allowing for a convoluted scientific game.

Under the direction of Daniel Goldman, Hinton and his new wife Jo Eagle, who smiles sweetly and plays a mean accordion, carry the project off with gentle wit utilising a mixture of data, songs, jokes and force of personality.