Great Grimm Tales

Boxtale Soup
Underbelly, Cowgate

Great Grimm Tales

Intricately weaving together a series of folk stories, the three-strong cast of Great Grimm Tales take the audience on a journey to palaces, graveyards and haunted castles.

Underscored by an impressively creepy soundtrack, these locations are conjured up through the clever use of puppetry and manipulation of the atmospheric and functional set comprising of grey trees and luggage trunks.

It is suggestive but also leaves plenty to the active imagination, the storytellers filling in some gaps but leaving others tantalisingly empty.

The cast glide between characters, switching scarves and accents as the horrors of each tale unfold: a girl who has both hands chopped off, a boy who seeks to learn the meaning of fear and two strangers guarding a grave to save a soul. Whilst not unsuitable for children, this is not aimed at them, blood and gore recreated through timing and fabric, the spectre of death providing a puppet-based introduction to the show.

With a grey backdrop and costumes of muted tones, the pervading mood is murky and something Boxtale Soup could capitalise even further; while the content is dark, it’s executed almost too neatly to truly scare or unsettle. Slick and earnest, Great Grimm Tales is certainly a reminder that virtue brings its own rewards.

Reviewer: Amy Yorston