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Review | Diva Live From Hell | Kings Head Theatre | 11/06/2024

After an acclaimed run at Turbine Theatre in 2022, ‘Diva: Live From Hell’ is back, playing at the King’s Head Theatre ahead of a stint at the Edinburgh Fringe.

We follow the story of Desmond Channing, president of the Ronald Reagan High School Drama Club. All is well until new kid Evan Harris comes along to take the crown as top dog, when he gets cast in the lead role in the school play! With a host of supporting characters sharing the limelight, Desmond takes us on a 70 minute journey of how he ended up spending eternity in the Seventh Circle cabaret club re-telling his story.

Luke Bayer is an absolute tour-de-force, playing all characters to hysterical perfection in this devilishly camp one man show. Through his every look and move, we instantly know which character he is before he even opens his mouth. From the nervousness of best friend Allie Hewitt to the confidence of Mr Dallas, each character is fleshed out wonderfully with Bayer holding the audience in the palm of his hand.

It would be easy to dislike Desmond, he’s obnoxiously self assured and could be a lot kinder to those around him. However through his characterisation, Bayer captivates the audience throughout in the most hysterical way. Bringing Nora Brigid Monahan’s book to life with perfect comedic timing, he elevates the script with his hilarious ad libs. With minor sound issues being present at my performance, these were handled comically in character, only adding to the gleeful experience.

Littered with musical theatre references, there are plenty of easter eggs for theatre kids to devour. However, you don’t need to pick up on these to enjoy the show. It has belly laughs galore and I challenge you to find a more fun at the theatre currently. This is a slice of theatrical heaven, straight from hell and not one to miss.

'Diva: Live From Hell' plays at King's Head Theatre until Saturday 29 June 2024.

Note: My ticket was gifted. Irrespective of whether a show is gifted or bought, I always ensure that my reviews are fair and based on my honest opinion alone.


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