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TWENTY MINUTES TO NINE

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Theatre

Venue:The Free Sisters, 139 Cowgate Edinburgh EH1 1JS
Phone: 0131 622 6802
Links: Click Here for venue details, Click here for map
Ticket Prices: Free  
Room: The Wee Room
AUG 2-3, 6, 9-10, 13, 16-17, 20, 23-24 at 11:00 (60 min)
 
Show Image

Nominated Best Performance, Melbourne Fringe.
Life's a party. At some point we all have to leave; some of us just choose when. Through storytelling, live musical soundscapes and spoken word, this is an autobiographical account dealing with loss.
It is raw, honest, funny and heartfelt.

"A brave, insightful, heart-wrenching solo performance" (Fritz Magazine).
"Wonderfully refreshing and frank" (FringeReview.co.uk).
"So simple and so honest it is positively magnificent." ★★★★ - What Did She Think


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News and Reviews for this Show

August 8, 2018  Fringe Guru
A one-woman show performed by Australian Amanda Santuccione, Twenty Minutes To Nine is an autobiographical exploration of Amanda’s life and, in particular, how it has been affected and shaped by death. It forms part of the "Death on the Fringe" strand, which aims to promote more openness about death, dying, and bereavement in Scotland.

The event is structured as a storytelling narrative, broken up by several musical interludes and scripted performance pieces. The narrative style is informal and welcoming, and well suited to the small venue; it creates a level of intimacy that would be lost in a larger setting.

The show begins as Santuccione recalls her childhood, and her relationships with her siblings and parents. But this seemingly happy life was shattered by the suicide of someone close, when Santuccione was in her twenties. This appears to be a watershed moment, with her life split into a "before" and an "after", and it is the "after" that takes up the majority of the performance.

Death is almost always tragic, but suicide has always seemed somehow different. It is this difference that Santuccione focusses on, as the show compares the diversity of reactions and grief in response to different bereavements. Suicide poses unanswerable questions: how?, why?, is there anything that I could have done? But death from age or disease may be perceived as easier to accept, and it doesn’t create as many uncomfortable doubts.

A loop pedal is used on several occasions, building different atmospheres for more structured, impactful moments. However, the setting-up of the loops broke the narrative flow, and the payoff was not always worth the disruption. More successful was the wistful use of guitar and accordion, to highlight and underscore memories of her musical family – with the short pieces offering the audience time to reflect on the story being told.

Twenty Minutes to Nine is an engaging and thought-provoking piece about the impact of death and suicide. It is a sensitive subject, and Amanda Santuccione deals with it well, asking questions and seeking understanding to remove some of the stigma surrounding the issues. Her individual experiences and perspective allow for an emotional journey – yet it deftly diffused with comedic moments, which prevent the show from lapsing into the moribund and depressing event you might fear it could be. Click Here

September 19, 2017  What did she think?
Twenty Minutes To Nine - Theatre Review
Every so often I come across a show which is so simple and so honest it is positively magnificent. Twenty Minutes To Nine is that moment, that show. Playing (so very appropriately) in the smallest room in the world you can only catch this show - if there is room - for two more nights in The Dock at the Courthouse Hotel.

The Dock is a bedroom in the hotel, and whilst there is no bed in there at the moment, the ambience is perfectly suited to the intimate and honest story telling Santuccione is about to share. Santuccione is here to tell us the story of loss, the story of love.

It may be fair to say she has experienced more than the average Joe and especially more suicide than you might think possible. Rather than raging and blaming though, Santuccione talks about experiencing death in such an honest and adult fashion.

It is her experiences. She does not project onto any else. She does not talk about things she does not know or has not experienced. More importantly, she opens up her inner self and shows us what is real for her - the things that resonate and why, the things she remembers and why, the things she has forgotten although she doesn't know why.

Twenty Minutes To Nine is not just a reminiscence. Having been touched by the unspeakable death, suicide, Santuccione says in her press release "I am wanting to make it ok, I am starting the conversation because it is important to talk about it." She achieves her goal with beauty, pain, and pathos.

Santuccione is not just a great story teller. She is also a beat poet and intersperses the monologue with spoken word art. Her pieces on feeling feminine and what ifs resonate deep in the soul and left me breathless. I was also especially astounded with how seamlessly they merged in and out of the monologue. All of sudden we find ourselves in a rhythmic arrow pointing directly at the point she is making, the pain she is feeling, and the wisdom of sages as she processes her world.

People talk all the time about how great theatre does not need bells and whistles. Rarely do pared back shows actually exemplify this truth, but Santuccione does it. It is the raw honest, openness and garnered wisdom which makes this show phenomenal. There is not much time left, but don't miss it.

4 Stars Click Here

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