St Stephens, Edinburgh
After the cast of Hamlet take their bow and for those in the audience with post-show tickets, there’s a cabaret in the Lower Hall at St Stephens.
Each evening, accompanied by various members of the Hamlet cast, Richard Lewis hosts an eclectic soirée with song selections that range from the cheesy (albeit cheese that makes a pleasant accompaniment to a glass of Malbec) to the downright inspired. Not only is Lewis’ patter quick-fire and knowledgable, but his piano playing is sublime with selections that range from The Lion King (Disney’s Hamlet) and Pulp, through to Kander & Ebb and Beethoven. His Shakespearean links and connections can be corny, but the lyrics are genius and the singing is gorgeous with slick and well rehearsed backing vocals. On the night of this review cast members Rebekah Grace Summerhill and Katie Ayton were performing alongside Lewis, delivering delicious vocals.
It’s a high-brow to low-brow transition as one descends the St Stephens staircase, but this cabaret is a immaculately rehearsed glimpse of the fringe’s diverse entertainment. If you’re not rushing off to another show, it’s well worth checking out.