A modern Scotland where for many of today's youth the problem of knife and drug crime is rife is the basis for this potent musical by writer/director/producer Finn Anderson which is receiving its premiere at the Fringe in its new format.
Work started on this show in 2011 and has been rewritten with new songs added for its Fringe run. Whilst it does deliver a gritty, fast paced story, it feels as though we are watching a show that still needs some refining in its script. It sets the plot up at lightning speed with cast of secondary school kids mixing with people in their early 20s who are soaked in a drugs world riddled with violence and crime.
The lead ‘bad’ character of Skinner is played by the show's creator and writer Finn Anderson but he doesn't come across as being the downright evil character he is suppose to be. A little more conviction would drive the character forward.
There are some good voices on display in the show, especially an excellent duet between two mothers from different sides of the street giving a soulful sound to the show. The last 10 minutes or so of the show felt like a litany of death and destruction and really need to be reworked as it seems like mass violence for no dramatic or storyline benefit.
There were some sound issues in the performance but those can easily be ironed out. In terms of performance the cast deliver a good ensemble piece but Liam Vincent Kilbride excels in the role of Jason, his eyes really draw you to him whenever he is onstage and he emotes so well you can't help but believe in his heartbreak as his family falls apart and he has to give up the new girl in his life.
The overall feel of the show is very much a work in progress with some very interesting elements coming from a cast who are completely committed to the show and its themes. This show is definitely on firm ground and it will be interesting to see where the company takes it post-Fringe.