Zorro (4 stars)


Trust Visible Fictions – the hardest working, most innovative theatre company creating work for young folk and their grown-ups on the Scottish theatre scene – to be thinking most emphatically out of the box at this time of year. No snowflakes, sleigh-bells or soppy fairy tale characters for their Christmas show, oh no. Instead we’re transported to the sunny, dusty climes of colonial California for a swashbuckling encounter with everyone’s favourite masked vigilante.

Zorro has made countless appearances in pulp fiction, film, television and comic books, and, as Davey Anderson’s pacey adaptation attests, the heroic hombre’s adventures are easily pitched to fans of all ages. For the most part Douglas Irvine’s production eschews lavish spectacle and cumbersome props and set design for good old-fashioned verbal storytelling, the sparse, pop-up book staging leaving ample space for budding imaginations to get to work. The three-strong cast brings just the right balance of warmth and swagger to their multiple roles, adding depth to the story with little moments of off the cuff humour. Highly enjoyable from start to finish.

Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh, until Thu 24 Dec


Who's more festive than the masked and caped Spanish swordsman? No one, according to Visible Fictions and Traverse Theatre Company who have given him a family show make-over.

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