Listings Mon 3 – Sun 9 June

Jun 5 2019 | By More

The glory of Edinburgh’s theatre this week…

Time to dash to a theatre near you – it’s the last chance to see Zinnie Harris’s take on The Duchess of Malfi at the Lyceum and the only opportunity to see EGTG’s The Lark in Portobello.

Elsewhere, the Traverse has a trio of interesting shows, Scottish Opera settles in to the Festival theatre with its Magic Flute, David Blane kicks off his UK tour with a night at the Playhouse and there are a couple of shows at Cymera, the celebration of science fiction writing.

Richard Burkhard (Papageno) in Scottish Opera's The Magic Flute at the Festival Theatre from Wed 5 June. Pic: James Glossop

Richard Burkhard (Papageno) in Scottish Opera’s The Magic Flute at the Festival Theatre from Wed 5 June. Pic: James Glossop

The Duchess [of Malfi] is not easy viewing, as Hugh found out (★★★★☆  Necessarily nightmarish) but it is necessary. This Friday also sees the last of this year’s Talk Shows. Host Hannah McGill and guests Val McDermid, Hannah Manktelow and Lesley Orr will be asking Why Do We Want Blood (Particularly the Blood of Women).

At the Traverse, Harry Josephine Giles, hot from addressing the Holyrood Culture Committee, has their production of Drone ahead of a return for The Fringe; Irish company Blue Raincoat make a very welcome return with their take on Alice in Wonderland, and Wonder Fools has 549: Scots in the Spanish Civil War – so good they added an extra matinee.

Anyone who likes a laugh at the opera who hasn’t seen Thomas Allen’s take on The Magic Flute is in for a treat. Comedy and music hall frame a steam-punk setting which is not only great fun and beautifully sung but almost manages to get past Mozart’s antiquated sexual politics.

Amateur company EGTG provide the most experimental edge in this week’s shows, with their modernised translation of The Lark, complete with modern songs. Read our preview here: Lark Rising.

Rather less formal experimentation will no doubt be the order of the evening on Sunday, when Creative Electric produce their Working Class Exotica at Leith Dockers Club.


Click on the name of the show to go to its ticketing site.

Bellfield, 16B Bellfield Street, Portobello, EH15 2BP
The Lark
Tuesday 4 – Saturday 8 June 2019 
Evenings: 7.30pm.
See preview: Lark rising.

Against the backdrop of one of the world’s longest wars, a 17 year old peasant girl led an army of men into battle and carved a victory that defined France. She claimed God told her to do it; the church says she’s a witch and should be burnt alive.  Book here.

Festival Theatre
13/29 Nicolson Street EH8 9FT. Phone booking: 0131 529 6000.
Scottish Opera: The Magic Flute
Wed 5, Sun 9, Tue 11, Thu 13 & Sat 15 June 2019
Evenings (not Sun) 7.15pm , Matinee Sun 3pm.
Set in a spectacular world inspired by the Victorian futurism of HG Wells and Jules Verne, this Magic Flute balances the opera’s beguiling mix of comedy, fantasy and pantomime with a profound story of the search for wisdom, love and truth. Book here.

Scottish Opera: The Magic Flute Unwrapped
Thu 6 Jun 2019
Evening: 6pm.
A taster performance of Scottish Opera’s The Magic Flute. Book here.

Scottish Opera: The Magic Flute Dementia Friendly
Fri 7 Jun 2019
Afternoon: 3pm.
A Dementia Friendly performance of Scottish Opera’s The Magic Flute. Book here.

King’s Theatre
2 Leven Street EH3 9LQ. Phone booking: 0131 529 6000.
Cross Currents
Thurs 6 June 2019
Evening: 7.30pm; Matinee: 2pm.
Showcase of the talent and diversity of the dancers training at Performing Arts Studio Scotland (PASS). Book here.
Ballet Black
Sat 8 June 2019
Evening: 7.30pm.
Celebrating their eighteenth year, there’s always excitement when Ballet Black take to the stage. Their popular programme contrasts dramatic and inventive storytelling in a lively showcase of modern ballets. Book here.

Leith Dockers Club
17–17a Academy Street, EH6 7EE
Working Class Exotica
Sun 9 June 2019
Evening: 7.30pm
See preview: Nae Poshos.
In this era of gentrification Creative Electric are asking Cunningham Heavin Architects do they really know what a community wants or needs. Aa creative community consultation by Leithers with Leithers for Leithers with Music, live art & performance from working, benefit and underclass artists. Book here.

Lyceum Theatre
Grindlay Street EH3 9AX. Phone booking: 0131 248 4848.
The Duchess [of Malfi]
17 May – 8 June 2019
Daily Tue – Sat: 7.30pm; Matinees Wed, Sat: 2pm.
Æ review: ★★★★☆  Necessarily nightmarish.
Webster’s original is the most thrilling and chilling of the Jacobean revenge tragedies – an exploration of male rage and female resistance as two brothers try and control their sister, block her marriage and repress her agency with fatal results. These themes of patriarchy versus female empowerment convinced Zinnie Harris that the play is ripe for an adaptation which chimes with our contemporary concerns surrounding the abuse of male power. Book here.
Talk Show – The Duchess [of Malfi]
Friday 7 June, 5pm.
Why Do We Want Blood (Particularly the Blood of Women)
Hannah McGill hosts a discussion around issues raised by The Duchess [of Malfi]. With guests Val McDermid, Hannah Manktelow, Lesley Orr and music from the Anji Darcy Band. Free but ticketed: Book here.

18 – 22 Greenside Place, EH1 3AA. Phone booking: 0844 871 3014.
David Blaine: Real or Magic 
Wed 5 June 2019
Evening: 7.30pm.
Having revolutionised modern magic and mesmerised audiences in America, magician, illusionist, and stunt artist, David Blaine sets out on his first-ever U.K. and Ireland tour from Edinburgh. His one-man show is an experiment in and of itself, combining sleight of hand with his death-defying endurance acts. No two shows will be exactly the same. Book now.

The Pleasance
Pleasance Courtyard, 60 Pleasance EH8 9TJ.
The Devil in the Belfry
Sat 8/Sun 9 June 2019
Sat: 5.45pm, Sun: 6.15pm (Bar)
Part of CYMERA. Handel Fledermaus has travelled from the distant town of Vondorvotteimittiss, where the cabbage is king and time is sacred. Edgar Allan Poe’s comical short grows arms, legs and teeth in a fantastical and frantic monologue by Dave Robb, directed by Flavia D’Avila. Book here.
Aurora Writers Present: Witches’ Gets
Sat 8/Sun 9 June 2019
Sat: 8.45pm, Sun: 7pm (Lomond Room).
Part of CYMERA. Written by Noelle Harrison & Becky Sweeney. Based on the novel Where the Ice Burns by Noelle Harrison, this 55-minute physical theatre show blends spoken word, film projection, music, and movement. Book here.

The Studio at Festival Theatre
22 Potterrow, EH8 9BL. Phone booking: 0131 529 6000
Curious Shoes
Thursday 6/Friday 7 June 2019
Thurs: 10.30am, Fri: 2pm.
A joyful performance for people living with dementia and their loved ones to share. This funny, entertaining and beautifully simple story comes to life through live music, movement and very few words. Book here.

Traverse Theatre
10 Cambridge Street, EH1 2ED. Phone booking: 0131 228 1404.
Tue 4 – Wed 5 June 2019
Evening: 8pm (Trav 2).
Harry Josephine Giles & Co. with a live jam of sound, visuals and poetry, telling the story of a military drone’s life and fears. Book here.

Alice in Wonderland
Thu 6 – Sat 8 June 2019
Evening: 7.30pm (Trav 1)
Alice in Wonderland, Blue Raincoat style, promises to be a visually sumptuous and physical re-telling of Lewis Carroll’s beloved work. Follow Alice on her strange journey through Wonderland with the Queen of Hearts, Mad Hatter, the frantically late White Rabbit and Ireland’s longest running theatre ensemble. Book here.

549: Scots of the Spanish Civil War
Thu 6 – Sat 8 June 2019
Evening: 8pm (Trav 2).
Wonder Fools with the true story of four miners who, 80 years ago, travelled from the streets of Prestonpans to the valleys of Spain to join the International Brigade. Book here.

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