Every year at the Edinburgh Fringe, there is a little sprinkling of magic around the Pleasance Courtyard, and it comes in the form of The Young Pleasance. Primarily based in Islington, the company helps young people to experience theatre at the highest professional level.

This year their production is ‘Alice Unhinged’, a take on the classic Alice in Wonderland This updated version sees Alice have her drink spiked at a club, and as medics fight to save her life, we follow her journey through ‘Wonderland’ to defeat the evil Red Queen. Both actresses play their respective roles perfectly and are a joy to watch.

Hamish Lloyd Barnes as the Cheshire Cat gives a simply delicious performance, with every movement and lick of his lips a nod to the darker side of the tale.

What’s important to understand is that while The Young Pleasance is made up of young performers, the productions are nowhere near amateurish. Last years ‘The Hampstead Murder Mystery’ was as polished as any professional production, and while ‘Alice Unhinged’ is slightly scaled back, it still stands head and shoulders above many of the shows at the Fringe. Every single young person who has worked on ‘Alice Unhinged’, whether on stage or behind the scenes, should feel extremely proud of the exceptional quality of their work.


Greg is an award-winning writer with a huge passion for theatre. He has appeared on stage, as well as having directed several plays in his native Scotland. Greg is the founder and editor of Theatre Weekly


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