SPOT­LIGHT

“Friends and fam­ily” “Thrilled with the re­ac­tion” You’ll con­sider your­self sur­prised

Evening Express (City Final) - The Guide - - ARTS AND STAGE - By Gareth Alexan­der

The young and en­thu­si­as­tic cast of Olivia at Aberdeen Arts Cen­tre.

SHER­LOCK Holmes, Scrooge and El­iza Doolit­tle walk into an or­phan­age. No, it’s not the start of some lit­er­ary joke, it is, in fact, part of the premise around which GizGiz’s new show Olivia is built. Scripted by Mal­colm Cir­cum – who also wrote the lyrics and mu­sic – it is a retelling of Dick­ens’ tale Oliver, but with a fe­male lead and a few spe­cial guests, in­clud­ing Dick­ens and Ge­orge Bernard Shaw. Rachael Grant – who is di­rect­ing her sec­ond show with GizGiz fol­low­ing last year’s King and I – said: “They come in as de­tec­tives hired as one of the main char­ac­ters is want­ing to find out some­thing ... but I can’t say too much with­out giv­ing the plot away. “The show re­lies on dra­matic irony and I think that’s the fac­tor in this that makes peo­ple sit up and take no­tice of it. “These char­ac­ters are so colour­ful and dif­fer­ent.” But she said that the choice to stage Olivia – as well as it be­ing a lively and in­ter­est­ing play – was due to the group it­self. “GizGiz is made up of mainly girls and the lead char­ac­ter is a girl in an or­phan­age. “We wanted to make sure there were enough roles for the cast we have. We re­ally need boys in GizGiz!” But she had noth­ing but praise for her cast, in­clud­ing Emma Stott, who is per­form­ing the lead role just days af­ter her 11th birth­day. “Emma is tak­ing it in her stride. She’s very good, very con­fi­dent. She’s got the per­fect ac­cent and she takes

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