Blood Brothers at the Edinburgh Playhouse Review

BloodBrothers2016Blood Brothers
Edinburgh Playhouse

8-13 February 2016


Reviewed by Dawn Watson

It’s been many years since I had the privilege to see Blood Brothers and I still to this day remember how my skin tingled and I had goosebumps watching the wonderful Linda Nolan perform as Mrs. Johnstone, standing up near the end and crying……

14 years later and nothing has changed. Wow! An incredible, heart wrenching and at the same time heart-warming story…. again standing ovations all round – a true testament to a truly wonderful story that even 29 years since it first hit the stage it is still leaving audiences emotionally charged and wanting to go home and give their families a huge hug.

Blood Brothers was written by the talented Willie Russell and is set in his home town of Liverpool. It follows the story of Mrs. Johnstone who after having many children her husband left her – on finding she was pregnant with twin boys she did the only thing she thought she could do to help all her children survive and that was to give one of the twin boys away to her rich employee who could have no children of her own. They entered a secret pact and shared a deep dark secret that crashes magnificently around them at the shows climax.

The show captures the true essence and feelings of desperation, hurt, love and life in Liverpool when life was tough for families, when jobs were hard to get and hold on to and when life was a struggle just to survive.

Willie Russell truly captures the feelings of the children with such gusto and exactly as you remember how it was like being a child, playing Indians and cowboys and running free in the summer.

The narrator played by the wonderful Kristofer Harding was like the two women’s ‘conscience’ – when he sang you were drawn further into their story and understood how they must be feeling. This truly is a wonderful magical and gut wrenching show. Special mention to Lyn Paul who plays Mrs. Johnstone, she captured me from the first notes of the brilliant ‘Marilyn Monroe’ song. Her voice left the hairs on the back of my neck tingling. And wow ‘Tell Me It’s Not True’ had many many of us in the audience in tears……..

I love love this wonderful show.

The Edinburgh Playhouse is situated at the far end of town, a short walk from Waverley Station and with plenty parking and bus stops nearby.

I would love to give a huge 5* for the fantastic Blood Brothers.

Rating: 5/5 thumbs_up

Tickets cost from £14.90 to £52.40 (plus £4 transaction fee).

Blood Brothers is at the Edinburgh Playhouse until 13 February 2016. For more information or to book tickets click here or call the box office on 0844 871 3014.

Edinburgh Playhouse, 18–22 Greenside Place, Edinburgh, EH1 3AA | 0844 871 3014


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