Edinburgh Fringe: Former Denny High pupils to star in capital venue with play they wrote in school

A group of former pupils from Denny High are preparing to make their debut at the renowned Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Thursday, 14th July 2022, 2:18 pm
Updated Thursday, 14th July 2022, 10:04 pm

But not only are they starring in a production, they have written the play and are producing it themselves.

The idea first came about last September when Alex Norcott, a drama teacher at the school suggested to his S6 class, given the array of creative talent in the year group, they collaborate on devising an original play to take to the Fringe.

Alex said: “Flash forward a school year and we have reached our target.

Former pupils f Denny High are practising for their debut at the Edinburgh Fringe next month

"The play is an historical comedy but its topical themes render it more a satire – a farcical one, at that. What’s more, the play is set in our very own Denny, albeit circa 14th century.”

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Advanced Higher pupils – Josh Fleming, Charlie Grant, James Wilson, Jack Paterson, Louise Lind, Janey Wilson, Aaron McKay and Jennifer Reynolds – teamed up with former drama classmates and fellow sixth years – Alex Blackwood, Adam Paterson, Oliver Sprouting and Nathan Gray – to create a one-time company called Advanced 22 and will embark on taking their exciting production to the streets and venues of Edinburgh.

Entitled The Plague of Denny Ken, it will be performed in a theatre off the Royal Mile – Venue 39 in the capital – for a limited run on August 6 and 7. Tickets are £5 and available to purchase here.

The former Denny High pupils have written and produced their own show to take to the Edinburgh Fringe

The publicity image was designed by Lucy Mann, a graduate of the group, who plans to create an official poster this month.

The group’s publicity material says: “The play is a fictionalised account of the Black Death of 1350 hitting Denny village and its feudal Lord – noticeably blonde-haired and chewing mouthfuls of hubris – who chooses to party instead of taking action, much to the despair of locals.

"Adding to this cauldron of chaos are the conspiracy theories expounded by the paranoid Karen and her over-zealous cronies.

"The comedy is idiosyncratic as an absurdist play, with language and cultural references familiar to our own age. It merely uses the Black Death as an allegory for the Covid pandemic, making this personal to the experiences endured by the cast.”

The play is suitable for those aged 16 and over.