My Edinburgh Festival Highlights!

Okay so the Festival may have ended two weeks ago, but I feel like that is the right amount of time to recover, sleep and be in the right mental place to reflect on the craziest month of the year! I am a total Fringe fanatic and I like to think of myself as a professional audience member, managing to fit as many different shows in as possible and so here are my top 6…

1. Rhapsodes – Comedy/Improv – Extempore Theatre 
2016rhapsod_pdSo religiously as the Fringe I make seeing Showstopper: The Improv Musical a staple in my plans and this year was no exception but what really blew me away was the show that two of the Showstoppers dudes did where the improvised Shakespeare. Now like me initially, you may be thinking how can you improvise plays that already exist? I thought they would follow the same format as the Showstopper musicals but it was actually so different and impressive. They ask the audience for situations in their lives and then improvise a scene but in iambic pentameter – which is soooo incredibly clever. Improv is scary enough, never mind adding extra strict rules. As well as Shakespeare, they also handle the rhythms of writers like Poe and Pinter and they even took my story of an unwanted visitor and had me crying with laughter. They honestly blew me away and were so funny, some really talented guys! ☆☆☆☆☆

2. Alan Cumming Sings Sappy Songs – Cabaret 
tumblr_oc7ac2tmtn1r31h53o3_500So this may be an obvious choice because he was the hot ticket of the festival, but man, he is talented. From his stories, to his singing to the comedy the show actually did take you on a journey. It actually surprised me how broad his Scottish accent is because I’m so used to seeing him play an American but he is just fabulous, I wish I was his friend. On the whole a happy occasion and special squeals came out of me when he referenced The Good Wife, Liza and loving this crazy home we call Scotland. ☆☆☆☆☆

3. A Little Princess – Theatre – Foxglove Theatre
2016littlez_atbThis one made me a little nervous because the story was so special to me during my childhood I was praying that they did it justice and they did. It had the endearing heart and important lesson that you want from the story even if their abridged version missed out some of Sara’s story telling, that didn’t alter your connection to the characters. Some very talented actors and the addition of music and song made the scene transitions beautiful. This show particularly made me happy because they collected donations for The Little Princess Trust who donate real hair wigs to children with cancer. ☆☆☆☆

4. Hess – Theatre – Derek Crawford Munn
2016hess_gdThis guy managed to break my vendetta against the ol’ one man show format. I usually can’t handle them and every single one I’ve been to has been disappointing… until now! Munn is an incredible actor and Michael Burrell’s writing is so thought-provoking and realistic. As a bit of a history dork I found it so interesting to learn about a figure that we don’t look at as often, especially in the most widely studied section from history. Flipping the perspective of the WW2 aftermath was compelling and I was absolutely captivated for the whole 75 minutes, what more could I ask for? ☆☆☆☆☆

5. Christina Bianco – Cabaret
christina-1001.jpgThis was the second time I had been to see the wonderful Christina Bianco perform and my goodness does she blow you away every time. I actually forgot how amazing she really is. If you don’t know, Christina is an impressionist and damn does she nail all your favourite divas’ voices. Her segment on Barbra Streisand’s interior design book kills me every time. Big up to her Shirley Bassey, Edith Piaf and Celine Dion. ☆☆☆☆☆

6. The Tap Pack – Dance
2016tappacl_abaI absolutely adore tap dancing and wish I could do it myself. The Tap Pack are so charismatic and creative, the show ran seamlessly and was way more than just a dance recital, you had comedy, cabaret, dance and music all rolled into one. One of the dancers seemed really familiar to me when I realised that he was one of the actors in a kids show that I nerd out on called Dance Academy (he plays Ben) and he also ended up singing my favourite Justin Timberlake song of all time – That Girl – so my day was made. The Tap Pack made my little dancer heart soar. ☆☆☆☆

I’m counting down the days to August 2017 already!

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