The Crown Dual

The Crown Dual is a play within a play. The premise of the show is this: having been overlooked for the titular role, wannabe actress Beth (Rosie Holt) comically recreates the first two series of Netflix’s The Crown with her bumbling agent Stan (Brendan Murphy).

This is the essence of what Fringe shows are all about, ridiculous, absurd and downright fun.

It begins with Stan demanding the audience get on their feet and 'show some respect' while the ‘Queen’ enters, she comes in as the national anthem blasts out and sits down on a plastic garden chair that’s been spray-painted gold. This is an amazing and captivating entrance but things quickly turn flat, as Beth and Stan introduce their ‘real’ selves and have a rather dry conversation about Stan being a bad manager and Beth being his only client. It feels unnecessarily drawn out and more suitable for a young children's show (which, with a 14+ age guideline, this is not). Essentially, the start is lacking in the needed oomph to draw a lot of laughter.

When the parody officially begins it’s delightfully funny and ever so silly, Holt and Murphy are at their best in this part of the show. The writing, by Daniel Clarkson, is deeply witty and has the audience chuckling.

Between the pair of them they play the whole cast of The Crown including a bizarre but thoroughly humorous enactment of the Queen’s corgis. Highlights include Princess Margaret who is portrayed as a Bridget Jones figure, feverishly writing in her diary and smoking away, and the ageing Winston Churchill. While both Murphy and Holt turn their hand to portraying the Princess, it is Murphy’s charismatic performance and over the top royal swagger that really shines.

The little nods to Netflix are a cracking addition with real-life pop-ups involving audience interaction to click the ‘button’.

The audience participation is fantastic, with people being used to help reenacte key parts in the Coronation (like the Archbishop of Canterbury) and in our showing one woman was brought out on stage to represent a whole boys’ choir (including the wearing of appropriate religious dress).

With a bottle of chambord in one hand and a garden stake light in the other, the ‘Queen’ is officially crowned. This is the essence of what Fringe shows are all about, ridiculous, absurd and downright fun.

What let this show down was it’s rather lacklustre beginning and the time it took for there to be any sort of energetic and engaging performance.

Despite this, if you enjoy lighthearted parodies, poking fun at the royal family and are looking for a silly afternoon show, the chances are this one will be right up your street - it is awfully enjoyable once they actually get into the swing of things.

Reviews by Hannah Crofts

Gilded Balloon Patter Hoose

The Crown Dual

Pleasance Courtyard

London Hughes: To Catch a D*ck

Underbelly, Cowgate


Gilded Balloon at Old Tolbooth Market

The LOL Word

C venues – C viva

Shakespeare for Breakfast

Underbelly, Bristo Square

Myra DuBois: Dead Funny


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now



The Blurb

Two actors farcically reimagine how Elizabeth Windsor became QE2. By co-creator of Olivier Award-nominated hit Potted Potter. ‘Happy and glorious parody of the Netflix series reminds us what theatre is all about’ **** (Telegraph). ‘Inventive fun skilfully combining play-that-goes-wrong antics with a potted history of the royals’ **** (Guardian). ‘Hilarious masterpiece. Rosie Holt and Brendan Murphy are incredibly successful in bringing to life many different characters’ ***** ( ‘Somehow manages to surpass the original. Irreverent, hilarious slapstick… provokes a grin that will make your mouth ache. Joy from start to finish.’ **** (Islington Gazette).

Most Popular See More

Pretty Woman: The Musical

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Life of Pi

From £19.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Cinderella The Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Lion King

From £36.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Back to the Future - The Musical

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £12.00

More Info

Find Tickets