John Gibson: Nothing in Vegas to beat the Dome

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Let there be lights and, by God, there were lights. All 85,000 of them. Counted them myself. The greatest light show on Edinburgh earth is at, you’ve guessed, the Dome in George Street. Standing out like a beacon at the Capital’s east end.

Now showing until Saturday, January 4. Sales and maketing director Kate Bell, below, is telling me: “I’m recently back from a business trip to Las Vegas. I saw nothing there to top our own show. You’d expect me to say so, of course, but I’d say go and see for yourself. We’ve got something to be proud of, ourselves and Edinburgh in general.

“We stand by the 85,OOO figure. More than ever before and the Dome opened in 1996. We switched on a bit later than usual this year but we didn’t want to steal any of The Lion King’s thunder. The Playhouse production held their party here for some 350 guests.”

Bookings for the Dome’s light show inevitably have been brisk, coach parties of Christmas shoppers will be coming up from Newcastle, Carlisle and the the like.

“I should add,’ smiled Kate, “the first snow of the winter will fall right here in George Street.”

Machine-made snow and you don’t get wet. How the hell did they get that towering Christmas tree in there?


... Anthony Hopkins talking: “My agent asked me if I’d like to read the phone book for some directors and I said yes. I could say I’ll do anything if they pay me but it’s not that. Stella [his wife] said ‘you’re an actor, it’s been your life. You can’t give it up’ My father retired too early. He was dead at 73.”