City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Mary - A Musical Play Review

By Gordon Clayton - Posted on 06 August 2012

Cast of 'Mary'
Show details
Lochaber High School
Running time: 
Jacqui Hume (Director), George Young, Ian Welch (writers)Jenny Wade(costumes)
Sarah Johnson (Mary), Kirstin McAdam, Katrina McMillan, Mary Fleming, Bronwyn Strachan (4 Marys), Michael Johnson (John Knox), Kevin Cameron (Darnley), Sandy Malcolm (Moray), Robin Walker (Bothwell)

Visually stunning,this may be the best dressed show on the fringe! this is the story of Mary, Queen of Scots played in a series of scenes starting with the tension of her execution and then going back to her days as a teenager setting sail for France and an arranged marriage with the Dauphin in an attempt to unite the crowns of the ‘Auld Alliance.

From her husband’s death and her subsequent return to a protestant Scotland we are taken through scenes depicting her poor decision-making which leads to her tragic end at the hands of her cousin Queen Elizabeth of England.

To a certain extent this is a history lesson put to music and is written in the style of the period. The murders of Darnley and Rizzio were opportunities for great drama which I felt were largely missed.

The singing was good although the balance of orchestra to young voices needs adjusting in the absence of microphones.

The play centres on two female monarchs and it is women who are the strongest members of the cast with the exception of Michael Johnson as John Knox. Latterly, Robin Walker starts to project as Earl of Bothwell, but the other males need to do likewise to match the girls.

The venue has a high ceiling and the audience on bleacher type seating so it is important to get the action as near the audience as possible. Sarah Johnson looked every inch the Queen and her singing was excellent throughout and is well supported by the four Marys.

Runs to 11th August, 4pm

Tickets £10 (£8)