When faced with the prospect of a show based around a yellow sponge, I must admit, I was cynical. Puppetry is a hard craft, and it is often a very tough task to please the audience. However, I was definitely proved wrong. Bruce is an excellent example of why you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, or a show by its puppets.
In this production, we follow Bruce, a cop turned hero novelist, in a story of romance, revenge, friendships and time travel. Told through the use of flashbacks, the vocal and puppetry talents of Wyatt Nixon-Lloyd and Tim Watts bring both Bruce and the story to life. The two men, wearing all black to match the backdrop, become invisible on stage, and manipulate themselves in such ways that they create over a dozen characters using only a single yellow foam block and a pair of white gloves.
I am more than willing to admit that I left the theatre with deep love and empathy for our protagonist Bruce, even if he may only be a piece of yellow sponge. The show takes a minimal, simplistic approach to comedy and puppetry and uses it to great effect – it’s no wonder that Bruce is sold out night after night.
A truly spectacular piece of puppetry, storytelling and comedy all rolled into one. Get tickets while you still can.
Words: Rebecca Divine
Bruce, Underbelly Cowgate, Aug 3-27 (not 14), 6.40pm