ON Saturday afternoon, Fife’s very own hit musical “The Kelty Clippie”, based on John Watt’s well loved song, parked it’s bus for an afternoon of mayhem and mirth in front of a sell out crowd in the Lochgelly Centre, writes Times theatre critic Kerry Black.

The Kelty Clippie started as an Edinburgh Fringe show a few years ago, then headed to the Carnegie Hall last year for a couple of sold out performances, before boarding the bus back to the Edinburgh Fringe again this summer. I have been lucky to enough to enjoy every one of these previous performances and can honestly say that this version was the best one yet.

In the immortal words of Sammy Cahn, “Musicals aren’t written, they are rewritten” and this time the entire production team had worked hard to ensure that the whole show was much slicker and even more hilarious than before.

Full marks to John Murray’s script, original songs written by John Murray and Willie Logan, director Laura Jordan Reed and Lorraine Brown CEO of Kingdom Theatre Company, for ensuring it all runs smoothly.

With the ever brilliant Jacqueline Hannan as Maggie Blair, a wee Fife lassie with dreams of being a conductress, the show burled us back to a Fife where the pits and factories were still working and a Saturday night treat was a big night oot at Kelty Club. The “Lo’gelly wi’ a W” audience loved all the local references, fae Ballingry tae Bowhill Baths and all the bus stops in between, they howled and cheered!

Jacqueline is a brilliant physical comedienne and a great actress and singer who was once again ably paired with Steve Ponton as Bob Driver, the object of her desire, who serenaded her with classics such as “I Left My Heart In Auchtermuchty”. Be warned, you may never look at a banana the same way again!

They had the usual band of awkward passengers and it was great to see how their characters have developed and improved, from the platform booted genius of Sandy Queen and Moira Davies, to Senga the drunken passenger (Lisa Birrell, on top form) and the two auld biddies played by Karen Stewart and Lorraine Dobie, this was a pantomime for the senses.

The newest cast member was well known local singer, Linton Osborne, multi tasking as everything from an interviewer to Elvis, who looked awfy like Wullie the Kelty Club doorman!

While the first-half remained much the same as before, with the action taking place on board the bus, the second-half set in the sparkling night spot of Kelty Club, complete with Bingo and Steak Pies for the dominoes, was drastically improved, allowing each character a chance to sing and dance, with a mix of original and well known songs all with a wee Fife twist.

There was plenty audience interaction, including this reviewer being hauled up to dance The Slosh in front of the packed crowd! Top marks to the crowd of women who all appeared wearing conductress hats too!

If you want to find out why Kelty is twinned with Las Vegas, make sure you catch The Kelty Clippie when it returns to the Fringe next summer and see why they deserved the standing ovation they received on Saturday!