Barnum at the King’s Theatre Glasgow Review


King’s Theatre, Glasgow

31 March to 4 April 2015

Reviewed by Debbie Douglas

The King’s Theatre Glasgow is a beautiful ornate theatre in the centre of Glasgow. The toilet facilities are good and there are a few lovely bars dotted about throughout for your refreshment needs. Staff were friendly and helpful. It is easily accessible by bus and train and has plenty hotels nearby if you wanted to make a city break out of your theatre trip.

This production of Barnum is presented by Carmeron Mackintosh and Michael Harrison in association with the Chichester Festival Theatre Production. It stars Brian Conley in the lead role with Linzi Hately as his long suffering wife Chairy. The Barnum story is based on Phineas Taylor Barnum who was born in the 1800’s. His belief was that there was a sucker born every minute and he was the one to “humbug” them. The plot also revolves round Barnum’s relationship with his wife how this grows and changes and how he eventually realises she is everything he needs and they complement each other perfectly.

Brian Conley was born to play this role. He had the audience eating out of his hand for the whole performance and interacted with them brilliantly. He reminded me of a young Dick Van Dyke in Mary Poppins. He was just amazing and a true professional when a couple of things obviously didn’t go quite as planned. The tightrope scene is worth going to see the show for alone! Special mention to the drummer for his solo whilst this was happening was superb!

Linzi Hately played the role of Chairy Barnum brilliantly and she complemented Brian Conley very well. You could see they had good on stage chemistry and her voice was amazing.

Kimberley Blake deserves a mention as the woman who leads Barnum astray playing Jenny Lind the Swedish opera singer. Her voice was fantastic and her attempts to learn to speak English very amusing.

The set is busy with lights and the band up top and fire on the state at some points! Brian Conley eating fire is something I never thought I would see! My one complaint about the show was it did sometimes get a bit too busy. There was just too much to see on the stage at the one time and I didn’t want to miss anything as the cast were fantastic doing somersaults and climbing and all sorts of brilliant things.

In conclusion this is a fabulously entertaining night out and I cannot see anyone being disappointed with this show. The whole cast are strong and it is well worth catching before the run ends.

Rating: 4.5/5

Tickets cost from £10 to £57.50 (plus £2.85 transaction fee).

Barnum is at the King’s Theatre in Glasgow until 4 April 2015. For more information or to book tickets click here or call the box office on 0844 871 7648.

King’s Theatre, 297 Bath Street, Glasgow, G2 4JN | 0844 871 7648

4 half Star

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