Ennio Marchetto – Living Paper Cartoon Pleasance One

It has been a while since Ennio has brought his show to Edinburgh. He is 54 now and has been performing pretty much the same show for nearly 30 years but hey, it still works and it is very funny so why change a successful formula? If you haven’t heard of Ennio Marchetto before, basically the show is just as described in the title – he becomes a living paper cartoon. Using ingeniously designed and extravagant giant paper doll costumes, Marchetto is transformed into a myriad of different characters and mimes, struts and parades around the stage to a great soundtrack of old and new songs. The costumes are so ingenious that he can turn them into another character right in front of your eyes – a mini skirted popstar folds into an evening gowned diva, a belt becomes a feather boa, a demure top becomes an enormous pair of boobs.

The range of characters is astounding and I won’t spoil the fun by telling you who they all are but suffice to say there is something for everyone whether it be a modern day pop idol, an opera singer, a work of art or even a local politician! He doesn’t just do individuals, we get whole choirs and bands and the juxtaposition of some of the character changes is hilarious. For those of you who have seen him before, there are some of the old faces which are still worth a re-look but there are plenty of new ones to keep the formula fresh.
Ennio doesn’t just dress up as these characters, he actually becomes them.

He has the most wonderfully expressive face and is still amazingly fit and flexible for his age. His portrayals are hilarious and you hardly have time to draw a breath between fits of laughter at one character before the next one is revealed. By the end of the hour, the stage is littered with cartoon costumes to which Marchetto pays homage as he takes his bow. Not a word has been spoken during that hour but we have been treated to something special and we have all had a great time. Catch him while you can.

Irene Brownlee