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EDINBURGH 2018: BWW Review: DON'T TELL ME NOT TO FLY, Underbelly McEwan Hall

EDINBURGH 2018: BWW Review: DON'T TELL ME NOT TO FLY, Underbelly McEwan Hall

EDINBURGH 2018: BWW Review: DON'T TELL ME NOT TO FLY, Underbelly McEwan Hall

In a new addition to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Don't Tell Me Not To Fly welcomes some of theatre's best known leading ladies to the Underbelly McEwan Hall for an evening of song and story.

Claire Sweeney is the leading lady to take to the stage for this part of the run. A typically tongue-in-cheek Scouser, she wastes no time at all in offering an access-all-areas glimpse into her life.

Many will recognise Sweeney from TV hits like Brookside and 60 Minute Makeover, but her passion for musical theatre is clearly what makes her tick. Her song choices reflect a performer who is both self-assured and open to exposing a real vulnerability on stage.

Vocal performance is key in delivering some big ballads, and our leading lady exerts no effort in hitting the high notes - and sustaining them. Intertwined with her stories of family, friends and the 'biz', this really is a great mix of song and story.

The one element that really lets this production down is the transitions between the 10 allotted questions, consisting of a painfully slow pre-recorded sequence that could be cut in its entirety.

Rather than enhancing the performance, it detracts from the rapport that is built between audience and performer. Despite this, however, Sweeney's charm is what carries the show and her love of life is infectious.

Whilst audiences might not expect to leave having been flashed Sweeney's spandex or be waving Union Jacks singing "We'll Meet Again" by the end of the show - not convincing all in the crowd, but all part of the ceremony - they are sure to be entertained by some timeless music and some fantastic tales from behind the curtain.

Don't Tell Me Not To Fly at Underbelly McEwan Hall until 27 August

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From This Author Fraser MacDonald

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