City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Burke and Hare Review

By Gordon Clayton - Posted on 12 August 2009

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Lochaber Onstage
Running time: 
George Young (writer and musical director), Jasmine Adams (artistic director/choreography), Jacqui Hume(drama director)
Robert Robertson (Burke), Alasdair Leeson-Payne (Hare) and Cast

The young cast of Lochaber Onstage bring Edinburgh's murky past alive with the story of the notorious ‘body snatchers' who provided the ‘specimens' for research at the famous medical school.

This play is set to music and it's the music that shows the young people's talent and that of the writer at their best.

"Burke and Hare" entertains and educates at the same time. The solos, duets and chorus are all delivered crisply culminating in a finale that is very effective and well directed. Initially the play is in a living history style but evolves into a court room drama where the one adult actor excels as the Judge.

The title roles are taken by Robert Robertson (Burke) who has a good voice, especially when dueting with his partner Helen McDougall. The two female leads were also very strong actors and singers.

Alasdair Leeson-Payne plays the duplicitous Hare in the character that changes most as the plot unfolds. The Mary Paterson role is shared over the run but the actor onstage on the opening night caught the eye firstly as a victim and later as part of the jury.

It's good to see such a young company word perfect and singing with great gusto. Pick of the songs was the opening number, West Port Inn, a duet between Burke and his partner, and also the chorus at the finale.

A live orchestra enhances the performance conducted by the writer and musical director George Young.

Let Lochaber Prosper!

Times: runs to 15th August, 5.15pm