27-28 May 2016
Reviewed by Deborah Mackenzie
The venue aims to be accessible for all, however there are a lot of stairs. Access for the disabled is on the side of the building. There is no access to the bars for disabled, but staff are willing to take orders for drinks. One of the disabled toilets was out of order (this was fixed within a few minutes). Definitely not a friendly theatre as far as access or conveniences go for those with disabilities (admin note: it is an old building and the staff go out of their way to do everything possible to ensure the best possible experience for visitors with access needs, please speak to staff for any help required).
The venue has two bar areas; the old world décor of dark wood makes them look a bit dark, but they gave the ambience of yesteryear. Staff were friendly, offering pre-orders for interval. Bar staff did make a lot of noise when throwing empty bottles into the disposal! This resonated around the small bar seating area. Prices are reasonable with a good selection of drinks and confectionary available.
The theatre is over 100 years old and has a long history, they have maintained the beauty of this theatre with elaborate décor. The theatre seats approximately 1300 people in comfortable padded seats that flip up. The beauty of the theatre is definitely worth seeing.
I never knew the original double act performed by Francie (Jack Milroy) and Josie (Rikki Fulton) who were a hit between 1958–1990’s, but their songs precede them and are well known. The tribute act by Johnny Mac and Liam Dolan captured the originals in looks, sparkle and warmth on stage. The gags probably older than them, were hilarious, and the songs still old favourites.
The two supporting singing acts by Christy Mac and The Jersey Notes. Christy Mac sang a variety of songs from over the decades, it was lovely that she sang an old favourite from the late Cilla Black as it would have been her birthday. The Jersey Notes did a tribute to Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.
I found the show to be something I would not have expected in this setting; I went expecting a good night of comedy and music. I was disappointed as the sound system and lighting were not to the standard I would have expected at a renowned theatre. I love the Jersey Notes! They dressed, performed and sang brilliantly and engaged the audience, so much so, people wanted them to continue. Christy Mac sadly reminded me of a ‘Butlin’s’ type singer, who did her best but there was something missing.
The stars of the show were amazing in their tribute, I laughed so much at their gags and songs, which were executed to perfection. I just wish that there were more of them throughout the show. The chatter from the audience during interval felt the same as me; we went to see the Francie and Josie tribute show, but instead we got a mediocre variety show, that brought down the stars of the show.
For other shows at the King’s Theatre in Edinburgh visit www.edtheatres.com.
King’s Theatre, 2 Leven Street, Edinburgh, EH3 9LQ | 0131 529 6000