WATCH: We take a backstage tour of Queen's smash hit musical at the Edinburgh Playhouse with star Ian McIntosh
BACKSTAGE, a dark and mysterious place that an audience never gets to see, is seldom less than a hive of activity during performances of the smash-hit musical's that tour to The Playhouse - this week, it's Queen and Ben Elton's We Will Rock You.
And it's not just during performances that backstage can be busy as I discovered earlier this week, when I caught up with actor Ian McIntosh, currently starring as Galileo in the newly re-imagined production.
With an understudy run taking place on stage, Ian took me on a whistle stop tour of the wings, costume village and band room before we got up close and personal with the show's most icon prop. You can watch it here.
For those unfamiliar with the production, We Will Rock You tells the story of a globalised future without musical instruments. A handful of rock rebels, the Bohemians, fight against the all-powerful Globalsoft company and its boss, the Killer Queen; they fight for freedom, individuality and the rebirth of the age of rock.
Scaramouche and Galileo, two young outsiders, cannot come to terms with the bleak conformist reality. They join the Bohemians and embark on the search to find the unlimited power of freedom, love and Rock.
If that has caught you attention, my colleague Allan Crow's review might whet your appetite further, he wrote: "An audience of 15 million across 17 countries, a 12-year run in the West End which comprised some 4600 performances, and now a 2019 re-imagining to kick-start the Queen juggernaut once more.
"I last saw it six or seven years ago, with Darren Day channelling his inner Ray Winstone as he turned the baddie into some bizarre east end gangster, while Curly Watts from Coronation Street jumped around as one of the Bohemians.
"This 2019 re-boot has jettisoned the stars from the telly, and stuck with a cast rooted in musical theatre. And it was all the better for it. It felt sharper and slicker, it was funny, the cast were engaging, and the digital set gave it a futuristic feel to try to make sense of the story line.
"Ian McIntosh and Elena Skye were excellent in the lead roles - Skye’s rendition of Somebody to Love was utterly superb - and they got plenty of laughs out of the updated script filled with knowing references to bands, songs and rock legend, while Michael McKell just about owns the second half with his fab stoner rocker act as Buddy, one part Neil from the Young Ones, one part a befuddled Keef Richards from The Stones.
"Jenny O’Leary made an excellent Killer Queen, and Adam Strong dialled down the Darren Day panto approach to make for a much more entertaining Kashoggi... and boy could they both sing.
"It’s often said the show appeals only to Queen fans. I reckon it’s much wider than that... The hits extend far beyond the die-hards, and with the recent Freddie Mercury biopic hitting box office gold, this revival is well-timed to tap into that new wave of interest."
We Will Rock You, The Playhouse, until Saturday 12 October, www.atgtickets.com/shows/we-will-rock-you/edinburgh-playhouse/