A swashbuckling adventure rom-com at the Lyceum

Some are born great, some achieve greatness… and then there’s Davie Balfour. 

19-year-old Davie has never left home, never been kissed and never fired a gun. Armed with nothing but a hand-drawn map, he heads off on an adventure like no other – quickly realising that he has?a lot?of catching up to do… 

This is re-telling of Robert Louis Stevenson’s adventure novella, with 20th?century pop music and 18th?century romance. Performed by an ensemble of actor-musicians,?Kidnapped?is a colourful coming-of-age story – shot-through with Stevenson’s trademark blend of poetry, humour and heart. 

The production comes highly recommended; the live music particularly good: a real mixture ranging from 80s pop to American folk and country. The fact that the narrator is RLS’s second wife, and American, adds an element of humour – a neat balance with the Scottish slant and bit of Glaswegian banter. Not only is there fun in the dialogue, but within the scenery and signage – Davy clearing a bit of seaweed to find a sign telling him he’s marooned on the Isle of Mull!

Given it’s such a small cast, there are some remarkable costume changes, and all of the ensemble are hugely talented, acting and singing. And aspects of the modernisation of the story, for example in the casino and club scene, work well too.

A National Theatre of Scotland production, Kidnapped! Has been adapted for the stage by?Isobel McArthur?with?Michael John McCarthy and directed by Isobel McArthur and Gareth Nicholls.

Running at the Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh, until 22nd April 2023

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