Review: Late Bloomers- Scotland! at Assembly Bijou
3★★★

Throughout the world Scotland is known as a nation of tartan-clad drunks. Scots – the stereotypes say – spend their days raging against the English, belting Auld Lang Syne while hunting wild Haggis. In this jolly show a Swede, an Aussie, and an Englishman who’ve never been to Scotland affectionately channel every one of these clichés into a wild circus.

They prance on stage dressed in full tartan overstatement, complete with sporran, felt beret, and elastic braces. One wears a shrunken wool waistcoat with a large tie flopping beneath it. They’re excitable. Clapping, stomping, giving each other knowing looks with boyish enthusiasm as they act out various Caledonian activities such as: fishing, re-enacting wars with the English, climbing mountains, eating shortbread, hunting stag, and drinking whiskey. 

It’s a family-friendly clown show with crowd-pleasing physical wit. The performers are all trained in the methods of Jacques Lecoq, a pioneering movement instructor whose teachings focus on mime, masks, a strong audience-performer relationship, and anarchic physical playfulness. Techniques on full display here. 

For some, the jokes may wear a little thin after the fifth or sixth bird impression. For others, the energy of these audacious, adorable men will carry the show. They’ve brave hearts for trying. 

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