Blizzard, Summerhall (Anatomy Lecture Theatre), Review

Blizzard - photo Sharon Hughes Photography
Rating (out of 5)
Show info
Emily Woof
Emily Woof (writer), Hamish McColl (director / dramaturg), Wes Williams (deviser), Charli Hurford (lighting and sound designer). (Supported by TORCH - The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities and Shared Experience Theatre Company).
Emily Woof
Running time

It’s been a really stressful time in the Chiltern household.  Dotty has been creeping around the house as her neuroscientist husband has been working so hard and thinking so much that it has started to go into his legs.

Even days out have failed to relieve the tension as her husband insists that things can’t be both inspiring and relaxing.  In his view this is typical of her illogical way of thinking where there is space for “cheesy chalk”, and she could poison him through their shared drinking water.  But they love each other really and have been together forever, since they met at a party, and he took a picture of her brain.

When he decides that he can’t travel to Switzerland to deliver a lecture on his life’s work she is packed off to read it out – “don’t worry, there will be slides”.

The journey sees her encounter fellow passengers and in an event in the town square a sort of performance artist examining our relationship to animals who has a sideline selling merchandise for the nearby Nietzsche House Museum such as “God is Dead” pillowcases.

Squeezing into a glittery dress that doesn’t want to be worn she presents the lecture, but when she starts to understand the principles of avalanches in neural networks things snowball and begin to unravel.

It’s an engaging and expressive performance, played with irrepressible energy.  Woof captures free spirited Dotty while seaming genuinely surprised to find herself channelling animals.

A sharply directed, amusing and more than a little surreal look at philosophy, love, and the soul.


Show Times: 8 – 27 (not 21) August 2023 at 3pm.

Tickets: £15 (£13).

Suitability: 8+ (contains strong language / swearing and sudden loud noises).