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Experiment Human


Experiment Human


52 West Port (Just off of Grassmarket)
Main Room: AUG 4-7, 9-14, 16-21, 23-28 at 17:45 (60 min) - Pay What You Can

Experiment Human

Blending dark comedy with the surreal, Experiment Human tells the story of Monkion, a non-human creature, curious to understand the world outside their laboratory in the attic. Having kidnapped the actor Benedict Cumberbatch at the height of his fame to protect him from the media, Monkion sets out to answer the ultimate question: what makes humans happy?

Will the experiment succeed this time? What will happen if it doesn't?

We'll find out...

“Brilliant and batshit … strikingly original with moments of absolute comic genius”

★ ★ ★ ★ Edfringe Review 2019

This year we have two entry methods: Free & Unticketed or Pay What You Can
Free & Unticketed: Entry to a show is first-come, first served at the venue - just turn up and then donate to the show in the collection at the end.
Pay What You Can: For these shows you can book a ticket to guarantee entry and choose your price from the Fringe Box Office, up to 30 mins before a show. After that all remaining space is free at the venue on a first-come, first-served bases. Donations for walk-ins at the end of the show.

News and Reviews for this Show

Review: Experiment Human, The Cockpit

July 21, 2022    Everything Theatre

Review: Experiment Human, The Cockpit

This surreal, quirky and at times bonkers show from Hooky Productions uses impressive comedy and outstanding physical performances to break down complex questions of what it means to be human.

Musician Natalie Russo starts the evening off by letting us know that this a relaxed performance and that we are free to leave or move around at any time. She then reveals that the show will be starting…now.

A body is seen on stage, and we’re led to believe that it is actor Benedict Cumberbatch. There’s a story about how he got there and what has happened since, and this is told by two Monkien. The Monkien (he/they) are non-human creatures that live in the attic. They don’t have family and often seem grumpy. What Monkien do have, however, is an interest in what makes us human, and a little bit of an obsession about their new friend/pet, Benedict Cumberbatch.

The lighting design by Lilli Fisher is extremely clear and effective, moving us along to different areas of the story, and there is obvious differentiation from when the audience are being spoken to or being directly involved. Audience participation is key to this show, and although I’m sure some may have felt uncomfortable at times, it is always a safe humorous environment. Most importantly, the intentions of the actors are consistently clear.

With the play being so surreal and highly subjective with its content and meaning, there are still things about it that I am trying to work out. Yes the play is hugely unpredictable, but it’s very funny too. It certainly makes you think as well as laugh. The jokes on the night landed well. More credit is due as the audience had such a wide age range, yet everyone was enjoying themselves; in terms of the humour, there was something for everyone.

The text was clever, allowing us to be laughing one moment and then thinking about complex problems regarding the human species as a whole the next.

The two central performances from Maya Hallpike and Rosa Thomas are outstanding. These characters demand so much both physically and vocally and the actors deliver. They exude confidence and skill, while joined on stage throughout by Russo who plays violin well, yet mirrors the off-beat and uneasy vibe the actors set.

This was the show’s first night at The Cockpit, the first two being cancelled due to the extreme weather (global warming is real!), although you wouldn’t have thought it. The production was composed and certainly hit the ground running.

Experiment Human is an extremely well made, bold, unique, surreal comedy that explores the things that make us human, and what makes us happy. The team holding it up are incredible and the central performances extremely admirable.

Written by: Maya Hallpike and Rosa Thomas
Produced by: Hooky Productions
Light design by: Lilli Fisher

Experiment Human has completed its London run. It will play at EdFringe throughout August. More information can be found here. Click Here For Review

Press & Media for this Show

Experiment Human