9 to 5 – Edinburgh Festival Fringe – Assembly Mound

20169TOA_AT9 to 5 at the Assembly Mound, until 28 August.

Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩

Dolly Parton would adore this rendition of her bouncy musical that gives a glimpse of what a world run by women could be like.

Set in the 1970s, the decade saw women returning to the workplace in a way never seen before. Parton’s show is sadly still as relevant today in terms of what it has to say about women’s place in the working world. But this is most definitely a comedy – and this young cast is packed full of enthusiasm and precision under Ken Alexander’s crisp direction.

The three leading roles are shared between a rotating cast – the cast members I saw were excellent: the characters distinctive, the singing note-perfect and movement that echoed the characterisation perfectly. The ensemble work is exceptional: every character on the stage has a back story that is evident in every move made and note sung. The cross-over scene changes keep the narrative driving forward for the audience – slick, witty and entertaining.

Richard Evans’ set is a triumph – unfussy yet having every bell and whistle called upon to make this production sing. The fantasy sequences where each of the three leading ladies plot the demise of the dastardly ‘Mr Hart’ are a delight from start to finish.

The theatre was packed – as well it should be. This is a terrific show, well done, y’all!

Fiona Orr
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

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