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  • Henry Longstaff

Distant Memories of the Near Future - Summerhall Edinburgh Fringe

Intertwined stories glisten with hope and wonder

David Head in distant memories of the near future


There has been much talk over recent months about the rise of AI and how it may affect our future but it is over at Summerhall where David Head has imagined a possible future where love has been solved by an algorithm, mandatory adverts are broadcast to citizens and we harvest soaring asteroids for their minerals. He tells a collection of stories that neatly knot together forming a potential tapestry that brims with hope and warning - a quiet cacophony of storytelling.

Head’s language and tone are calm and inviting, the terrifying unknowns feeling so small within the space he creates. Witty, satirical adverts spoken from disembodied voices pop up in front of us. One is for Q-PID, the data-driven dating service that scans your brain and studies your saliva to find compatible people around the globe or if you are unlucky mark you as undesirable. We hear how the service came about and the ripples it generated within society. Head’s narrative is so precise and plausible that I never once doubted the authenticity, he could tell me next week’s lottery numbers and I’d buy a ticket.

Throughout Head makes use of a projection to aid in his storytelling. At moments feeling like a sublime TEDtalk, it equally adds to his comic style that twinkles nonstop. This show is a tonic for existentialism, a space to lose yourself for an hour amongst the hubbub of the fringe festival - mesmerising and wondrous.

Running 8-13th, 15-20th, 22-27th - Tickets

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