Theatre Review: Edward Scissorhands at Milton Keynes Theatre

Edward Scissorhands at MK theatre
Edward Scissorhands at MK theatre

If I am to be totally honest, I was not enjoying the contemporary dance adaption of Edward Scissorhands until the introduction of the dancing hedge people.

Anyone who has seen Tim Burton’s eccentric film starring Johnny Depp will know the premise of the film - that a human can be created with scissors for hands - is deeply bizarre.

With no dialogue to fall back on, the ballet version attempted to provide Edward with a comprehensible back story; that he was created by an eccentric inventor whose son was electrocuted while he was holding a pair of scissors.

When the inventor is then killed on Halloween night, Edward is left orphaned and wanders into a nearby suburban town, set in 1950s America.

As with any production choreographed by Matthew Bourne, there are some delightful lifts and lines created by the cast of dancers introduced to the audience for the first time during The Suburban Ballet.

Despite appreciating the seamless technical footwork of the performers, it was hard to feel emotionally engaged in the action as Edward’s acceptance into the community passes with little drama.

The only storyline that remotely tugs the heart strings is the unusual love triangle involving Edward, Kim Boggs and her boyfriend Jim Upton.

Towards the end of the first half the show finally comes to life when Edward, played by Dominic North, and Kim (Katy Lowenhoff) come together in a sublime, dream-like sequence where they are accompanied by hedge-shaped dancers.

The second half opens strongly with a comical scene where Edward uses his unique limbs to create unusual haircuts, followed by an enjoyable cat and mouse dance between the town newcomer and the vampish Joyce Munroe (Daisy May Kemp).

However, the rest of the show then meanders to a conclusion where Edward is chased out of town after being encouraged to drink alcohol by his love rival Jim.

The happy ending between Kim and Edward then feels forced due to the lack of chemistry and on stage interaction (apart from the hedge dance) in the preceding two hours.

Perhaps the most realistic relationship was between Kim and Jim, who both seemed to glide effortlessly from waltz to lift when they were on stage together.

This production of Edward Scissorhands certainly has moments of dance perfection to take the breath away but lacks the coherent narrative to regularly bring a smile to the face or a tear to the eye.

Edward Scissorhands is showing at Milton Keynes Theatre until Saturday, February 21. To book tickets go to