Birdsong at the King’s Theatre Edinburgh Review

8-12 May 2018


Reviewed by Emily Crombie

Birdsong opened at the King’s Theatre in Edinburgh last night (8 May 2018) where it runs until Saturday 12th May.

Based on the book by Sabastian Faulks and adapted for the stage by Rachel Wagstaff, this tour of Birdsong is directed by Alastair Whatley and Charlotte Peters and marks the centenary of the end of the First World War.

As anyone who has read Birdsong will know, it is a reasonably large book set across different time periods within the 1900’s however the stage version focuses on the period around the First World War and is set on the Western Front in France.

The audience experiences the emotions and harrowing reality of war through Lieutenant Stephen Wraysford – a chilling reminder of what thousands of boys and men went through during that time.

Flashbacks to 1910 in Amiens, France allows the audience to realise what has gone before and understand the relationship with Isabelle Azaire. In parallel we also hear Jack Firebrace’s story as one of the Mole’s digging tunnels through No Man’s Land. The camaraderie and bonds formed between the soldiers sharply contrast the wartime backdrop.

Tim Treloar owned the role of Jack Firebrace truly capturing the character – a real rough diamond.

Birdsong was atmospherically staged heightening the emotion of the play. The haunting sound of the violin and a cappella compounded the feeling hopelessness.

The King’s Theatre is situated on Leven Street in the Bruntsfield area of the city. It is well serviced with public transport and there is on-street parking in the area. We sat in the stalls where the visibility was excellent and the seating comfortable with enough legroom. The theatre staff were welcoming and helpful.

Birdsong is a poignant reminder of wartime- get your tickets for this, its fourth and final tour.

Rating: 5/5

Tickets cost from £18 to £31.50 (booking fees may apply).

Birdsong is at the King’s Theatre in Edinburgh from 8-12 May 2018, for more information or to book tickets visit or call the box office on 0131 529 6000.

King’s Theatre, 2 Leven Street, Edinburgh, EH3 9LQ | 0131 529 6000

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