Entertainment

Edinburgh Fringe: 'A Grave Situation' Raises The Curtain On Dunkirk's Unlikely Heroes

The comedy follows five Yorkshire gravediggers who find themselves in the middle of the Second World War.

The latest performance to capture the audience's attention at this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe is 'A Grave Situation', a musical-comedy following five brothers from Huddersfield who are called to action in Dunkirk for their skillset in gravedigging.

A light-hearted take on the reality that men faced during the Second World War, the ordinary group immediately find themselves in Dunkirk, France, with German forces closing in.

With fitting British satire, the performance also follows the plight of the women left behind and the decision-makers in England.

Angela Ashton plays the role of Sussie Gunning, a member of the Women's Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF). She told Forces News:

"You have the parallel of the brothers and the administrators in the War Office back in England.

"There's scenes in France with a lot of dancing and music and it's great fun."

Though the play may be a comedy, a former WAAF member and grandmother to one of the cast members credited the accuracies of the play.

Ms Ashton says: "She was blown away by it, critiquing us on the costumes and saying, 'it's actually very well-done, I'm very proud of you all."

The satire comedy distinguishes between the experiences of the soldiers and the decision-makers back on home soil.

The artistic director, Kathryn Norton-Smith, believes the success of the play in Edinburgh is down to a recognised, age-old humour.

She says the play gives a tongue-in-cheek representation of the 'stiff-upper-lip':

"It's very much a pastiche of, not World War Two, but some of the films associated with that era."

Amongst the inspiration is the work of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, the British filmmaking duo who produced 'Contraband' (1940) and '49th Parallel' (1941).