One of the fun things about the Edinburgh Fringe is that never quite know what to expect. They are so many shows trying all sorts of new things that sometimes you get a really nice surprise. Take Blodlina The Viking Musical; an odd premise with some absolutely fantastic songs.
Scandinavia’s early medieval period has inspired an awful lot of media recently, everything from the Thor movies to the TV series Vikings and various video games, novels etc. It seems we’re a little bit obsessed with Norse myth. Blodlina The Viking Musical adds to this body of work by presenting us with the tale of two sisters. One is brutal and brave, the other cunning and quick. When their father dies, it’s the eldest sister (the brave one) who declares themselves Jarl, much to the chagrin of the much more charismatic younger sibling.
This sort of friendly rivalry catches the attention of the gods, namely Thor and Loki, who are of course parallels of the sisters. It’s up to their mother, Frigga, to make sure things don’t get too out of hand but of course, war inevitably happens. All the tropes of your usual Norse myth apply here; interfering gods disguised as mortals, clever plans that go wrong and lots of fighting. The stage combat is very well co-ordinated given the size of the venue and the action tells as much of the story as it needs to; not a single sword stroke is wasted, it’s just the right amount of action.
This is a musical and the songs work quite well, especially when they transition smoothly into the story. This does seem like a cut-down version of a much bigger planned show and quite a few of the tunes have the potential to be total show-stoppers, if they had a bit more staging and more time. They are some right bangers in this show. The gods get the best songs, which makes sense.
Blodlina The Viking Musical is a rare treat, a rock musical with sword fighting, drama and some great cosutmes. We would love to see it tour.