Cult hero Toxic Avenger debuts at Edinburgh Fringe

Off-Broadway musical The Toxic Avenger to get Scottish premiere at the Fringe
Off-Broadway musical The Toxic Avenger to get Scottish premiere at the Fringe
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TROMAVILLE, is crying out for a hero, so get ready to go green as the smash-hit musical The Toxic Avenger heads to the Capital for its Scottish Premiere, this August.

The hit off-Broadway rock opera, based on Lloyd Kaufman’s cult 1984 comedy schlock-horror film of the same name, will play an exclusive 26-date Fringe run at The Pleasance before transferring to London for a 12-week West End season.

The brainchild of the Tony Award-winning Joe DiPietro and David Bryan, a founding member of Bon Jovi, The Toxic Avenger: The Musical tells the story of a nerdy earth scientist Melvin Ferd the Third.

Determined to clean up the toxic waste problem in his home town, Melvin finds himself tossed into a vat of toxic waste and transformed into superhero The Toxic Avenger, or Toxie for short, a seven foot tall mutant freak with superhuman strength and a supersized heart to match.

Can he save heavily polluted New Jersey, end global warming, win the heart of the prettiest librarian in town and get home in time for dinner.

Mark Anderson, who reprises the title role for the Edinburgh run, is no stranger to the city and is thrilled to be coming to the Festival.

“It will be my first time performing at the Fringe and I’m ridiculously excited about it.

“I just can’t get my head around just how many shows are on at the same time. It’s crazy,” he says.

“I love the city and got to know it really well from when I performed at the Playhouse in 2008 as Robertson Ay in Mary Poppins, and again in the musicals Love Me Tender and Legally Blonde.”

Producer Katy Lipson, who was also co-producer of The Addams Family, which premiered here last month, says, “It’s always a thrill to produce new quirky, unique musicals which celebrate the idea of being different.

“The Toxic Avenger certainly fits that bill; it’s great fun and it entertains and thrills in equal measure.”

She adds, “It’s doubly exciting to be returning to Edinburgh with another Scottish premiere. The city really took The Addams Family to its heart. We had such a blast and I know we have another monster smash musical hit for you.”

Prepare then, to laugh, scream and sing along to songs like Who Will Save New Jersey? Get the Geek, Hot Toxic Love and Choose Me, Oprah!

Anderson admits, he has been warned of the challenges of performing such a big show at the Fringe.

“The Toxic Avenger is a big, big sing. I really need to take care of myself and I know the Fringe has a reputation for non-stop fun and late hours.

“When I was cast in the original London production last year, I contacted one of the guys who had already played Toxie in America. He told me to go home straight from the show, an alcohol ban, drink lots of water and take lots of rest. I took that on board and I lived like a hermit for 10 weeks. Boy, is the Fringe going to be hard.”

The Toxic Avenger: The Musical runs at Pleasance One (Pleasance Courtyard) from 2-28 August (not 14) at 10.30pm. Tickets priced £9-£15.50 go on sale tomorrow from 0131-556 6550 or www.pleasance.co.uk