SHOW REVIEW: One Man Lord of the Rings

Charlie Ross’ One Man Lord of the Rings comes to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Remember when you were kid and you used to play act your way through a scene from Star Wars or Superman  or Batman? If the answer is no then you should try it…great stress reliever. If, however, you are one of those who like me whose Parka would double as cape and cowl to reenact Batman’s latest adventure then this review is dedicated to you.

I first saw Charlie Ross when he came to my town with his one man Star Wars stage show. It was a dazzling performance of the original trilogy that left me believing in the force as that was the only way Ross could have effectively pulled off such a fantastic performance in reducing those films to an hour.

As I settled down to watch Ross’ attempt to tackle Frodo and co’s filmic quest to destroy the one ring a small Gollum – like voice whispered in my ear  ‘he can’t do it again my precious, he can’t’. About two minutes into the show and that voice was silenced forever.  Ross once again proves just how accomplished a performer he is and how much in love with his chosen subject matter he is. With just a slight change in voice, stance or flick of the hair he is able to switch effortlessly between Gandalf , Frodo, Gollum, Legolas and many other characters we know and love in a heartbeat.

Ross is like a whirling dervish on stage performing all the sound effects, musical cues and actions himself. It is impossible not to still be swept up in Gandalf confrontation with the Balrog, the battle at Helm’s Deep or the Ride of the Rohirrim. You almost forget it is one man up on stage at times.

Rather than just doing a shot for shot performance of the films (with the occasional suggestion to read the  Simarillion) Ross is able to inject a lot of humour into his performance but at no point do you feel like he is disrespecting the source material.  I especially loved the way he reminded the audience when it was time to change the DVD.

Of all the characters in the show that Charlie performs his Gollum is a rendition that should have Andy Serkiss quaking in his boots although his Legolas and Denethor coming in a close second.

I could go on and on about how much I enjoyed the show but the standing ovation that the humble Ross received at the end should speak volumes and yes I was one of those standing.

One Man Lord of the Rings is a thrilling rendition of the middle earth saga told one man ,who may or may not be a wizard, that will delight and amaze fans of the films.

Image from

GS Rating: 5/5

GS Reporter: Nuge

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