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REVIEW - The Black Blues Brothers (Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2023)

Updated: May 20

The Black Blues Brothers review, Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2023.

Assembly Rooms, Music Hall

August 2023


A family friendly, fun, acrobatic show.

The Black Blues Brothers are an acrobatic group who bring flips, tricks and human pyramids to the stage to the sounds of the cult film The Blues Brothers iconic soundtrack.

In an elegant club-style lounge bar, a cleaner is chasing his dream of becoming one of the Blues Brothers when he gets the chance to make his dreams come true. Following the whims of a vintage radio playing rhythm and blues music, the cleaner, the barman and the entire staff transform into performers who showcase their acrobatic prowess to the backdrop of the soulful music.

With their amazing tricks and infectious smiles, The Black Blues Brothers are undoubtably world-class acrobatic performers. Their routines are daring and fun. They use every object around them from tables, chairs, even mirrors. The club-to-dream concept works incredibly well to form a cohesive story.

The 'brothers' themselves are remarkably talented and they obviously love performing - the grins never leave their faces. Some of their tricks are incredibly dangerous - and they don't have any safety equipment or nets. But I didn't once feel that they were in any danger so skilled and assured are they. There was barely a wobble.

The music too is solid, including all times great such as 'Soul man' and "Gimme Some Lovin'". But the show needs a little something extra to raise it to a completely dazzling spectacular.

For example, in between the splendid dance and acrobatic displays, both the stage and the auditorium becomes silent. And not just for a few seconds, but for minutes at a time. The guys do a little clowning, a little teasing of each other, and scour the audience for volunteers.... All in complete silence. It's very jarring. And every time the music stops, the energy in the room drops. Why not play an instrumental version of the track that's just finished? The guys can do what they're doing, but with upbeat background music the audience will remain enthusiastic and alert. I understand that the soundtrack is meant to be coming from a radio, but in my experience, there is very little dead space on the airwaves.

Because there is little actual speaking in this show, it does well to appeal to an international audience. It's also family-friendly with plenty of young kids in the crowd on the day I attended. There is a minor strip-tease, but nothing more than what you would see at the poolside is ever revealed; and there is a scene where the guys 'fight' over a female member of the audience which felt slightly-outdated. But again it was the lengthy silences that seems to confuse the youngsters most. The music breaks were often filled with cries of "What's going on?" or "Why have they stopped?".

The Black Blues Brothers is great hour of entertainment for the whole family. Based at The Assembly Rooms Music Hall*, the largest space in The Assembly Fringe roster with 650 seats, it is no less a show that sells out repeatedly year after year. Book early and turn up early to grin along and clap along with the cheeriest guys at the Fringe.


*The Assembly Rooms Music Hall is one of the most beautiful and enjoyable venues at the fringe. With comfortable seats, great air-con and cheery helpful staff, it is always a pleasure to attend a show at this venue. Despite it's size and the large number of people they move in and out repeatedly throughout day, the shows always run on time and it's all remarkably well organised. Don't forget to look up! The chandelier is stunning.

When and Where?

Performance Dates: Thursday 3rd – Sunday 27th August 2023, 15:05

Running Time: 60 minutes

Location: Assembly Rooms (Music Hall), 54 George Street, Edinburgh, EH2 2LR

Box Office Tickets are available from

Midweek: £16.50 (£15.50) Weekend: £18.50 (£17.50)

The Black Blues Brothers review, Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2023. Lisa in the Theatre

The Black Blues Brother - credits:

Writer and Director Alexander Sunny

With Bilal Musa Huka

Rashid Amini Kulembwa

Seif Mohamed Mlevi

Peter Mnyamosi Obunde

Mohamed Salim Mwakidudu

Choreographer Electra Preisner and Ahara Bischoff

Scenographer Siegfried Preisner, Loredana Nones and Studiobazart

Lighting designer Andrew Broom

About The Black Blues Brothers

This exciting acrobatic ensemble trained in Sarakasi, a trust that teaches acrobatics and dance to the youth in Nairobi and surrounding areas. There they met Alexander Sunny, Circus Historian and Professor of History of the Circus and Street Performances, with whom they created this original and mind-blowing show.

This acrobatic tribute to the cult movie The Blues Brothers has established itself as a must-see international show with a highly-acclaimed world tour of more than 800 dates and 500,000 spectators. The troupe have even performed on the Royal Variety Performance (introduced by King Charles III), presented their show to Pope Francis and garnered critical acclaim at Monte Carlo Circus Festival, the most important circus event in the world.


The Black Blues Brothers review, Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2023

🎟️ Disclosure: I am an Edinburgh Festival Fringe accredited media reviewer and as such I receive complimentary press tickets in exchange for my honest reviews. My reviews and star ratings are always my honest opinions.

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Lisa in the theatre, theater, reviews, blog, Scotland, Scottish


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