Play Dough

In this energetic play presented as a game-show the audience is divided into two teams and sat facing one another across the playing space. I’m on Team Queenie and soon Queenie appears to introduce herself and teach us the team chant (her name, to the tune of the Jaws soundtrack). Over on the other side Queenie’s cousin TooMuch is warming up his crowd too. We’re about to learn about money through games – because money in itself is a game.

Jenna Watt and Stuart Ryan are excellent in their roles as Queenie and TooMuch and these scenes feel stronger than the game-show elements.

Then, with a nod from the security guard, they unveil 10,000 pound coins. They’re real. These are what we’ll be playing with today – although we can’t take any of it home. Audience members from each team participate in a range of challenges. First is shovelling coins and dumping them in a suitcase while Queenie blows a bubble and keeps it afloat. When the bubble bursts, it’s time to stop shovelling money. We also learn about ‘going long’ and ‘going short’ in the financial market. In the ‘going long’ challenge, it’s a competition between the teams to see who can blow a balloon the largest in 30 seconds. To demonstrate ‘going short’ it’s to see who will be first to inflate a balloon with a bike pump until it bursts.

As well as the games, there’s a narrative woven in. Queenie and TooMuch explain how they came to live with each other in Edinburgh after Queenie’s parents lost all their money in 2008 and had to sell the house and even her pony. Post financial crisis, the two young characters gain a new perspective on money. Jenna Watt and Stuart Ryan are excellent in their roles as Queenie and TooMuch and these scenes feel stronger than the game-show elements. With audience members on opposite sides of a large space, it was sometimes hard to hear the actors during the game-show challenges, and given the nature of the challenges and audience involvement, there were times when the actors momentarily lost control of proceedings. That said, these scenes are where we were most engaged and the team rivalry gave us something to cheer for.

This show is a remix of Money the Game Show, originally produced by Bush Theatre and Unlimited Theatre. It’s fast paced, fun and engaging. It makes the subject matter fascinating and accessible for young audiences (and older audiences). 

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Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
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Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
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Performances

Location

The Blurb

What is money? Did you know you can make it with just the power of your imagination? Join us for the game show where you play with 10,000 real pound coins. Our hosts will lead two teams through a series of high-energy games while telling you everything they know about how money really works. You can’t take any of the cash home with you but if your team wins, you get to decide the end of the story. A playfully interactive show by Clare Duffy about money for ages 7+. 'Right on the money' **** (Guardian). www.madeinscotlandshowcase.com

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