Spirit of Scotland Show

Spirit of Scotland Show, Edinburgh: Address, Phone Number, Spirit of Scotland Show Reviews: 3.5/5

Spirit of Scotland Show
Spirit of Scotland Show involves a rip roaring evening of traditional Scottish song and dance accompanied by a great selection of quality Scottish food to delight your pallet. Our resident band and traditional Scottish Dancers provide breathtaking performances for their audience and never fail to entertain.
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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Tours and Tickets
The area
Neighbourhood: New Town
Suits and shopping bags rule the streets of New Town, until after dark when strappy dresses come out to play. This is the city’s central business district with its smaller offices, clothes boutiques, and many of the city’s flashiest restaurants and ritziest clubs. The architecture along roads like George Street helps give it a swank and formal feel: it’s a planned Georgian development of regal townhouses, geometric squares, and self-important statues. But it’s also a very wanderable neighbourhood, with a healthy bustle at almost any time of day and fine people-watching in places like St Andrew's Square which fills with picnickers around lunch. You’ll also find a series of cheerful basement bistros on Hanover Street, while dark Rose Street has something of the feel of an undiscovered back alley and is chock-full of characterful pubs and small independent shops.
Popular mentions

104 reviews
Very good

Inver Grove Heights, MN1 contribution
Oct. 2019
For the price, it certainly was far less than I expected. I felt sorry for the wait staff, the wine was watered down and the overall meal was disappointing. The best part of the show was the bagpiper, without him it would have been a 1 rating.
Written 12 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Mike S
Brunswick, GA23 contributions
Tourist Oriented Basic Primer to Scotland
Oct. 2019
You are greeted outside by a huge, burly piper playing tunes like "The Black Bear" and "Highland Laddie." It is a precursor to a basic song and dance routine initiating the tourist into Scottish culture. Young folks do a sword dance, the piper appears to play more tunes, and the audience feasts on what is billed as typical Scottish fare - including haggis. Everyone is encouraged to sing along for some of the songs and there is, as always the stereotypical "Amazing Grace," really - adopted by the bagpipes decades ago but traced to an American slaver in the 18th century. I've seen personally several regimental pipes and drums including military tattoos, and that impression is far more Scottish. This events feels like Brigadoon coming out of it's slumber a bit too early.
Written 21 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Crystal Joy
Conesus, NY134 contributions
Theatrical production of Scottish song and dance
We were welcomed by a talented bag piper. He was one of the highlights of the evening.

The photos online vs real life are quite different. Online portrays interesting backdrops while in real life, we were taken to the basement of a jazz social club. The atmosphere felt more like a wedding reception than Scottish experience. The servers were all penguins with white dress shirts and black vests. It would have been more authentic to have the staff dressed in traditional Scottish garb.

The performers were talented and all performed to a pre-recorded soundtrack. That made everything feel stiff and staged. It would have been bette to have live music throughout the evening.

It took quite a long time after being seated for initial drink service to begin. (Extra long for my friend da next to me who asked for a beer, not wine) Meal orders were taken and when appetizers came out, it was like an auctioneer calling out for takers on the food.

The haggis ceremony was performed AFTER the haggis had been served to everyone. It seemed like an err on the part of the staff. My main meal and others around me were lukewarm or cool when served. The food was NOT piping hot. Dessert was tasty and a server was bringing around coffee/tea but ran out before they served me. She said she would be back and did not come back to offer me tea with my dessert. That was disappointing.

The dessert and coffee service happened right during the show and seemed quite disruptive since the servers were blocking views to the stage and didn’t seem in a hurry to complete their tasks.

Overall, not worth the value paid for this event. While the performers did a nice job with their parts, it was not worthy of the price paid. I was quite disappointed.
Written 12 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Calgary, Canada425 contributions
The show was absolutely amazing and well worth the money!!
The food was also amazing, I tried haggis for the first time which I actually liked!
There was not many of us at the show that night so it was more like a private show experience which was a huge bonus.
Probably my highlight when visiting Scotland
Written 5 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

1 contribution
Don't go...period!
Aug. 2019
Tourist trap at high price. Almost embarrassing experience. Poorly organized with wait staff unsure of almost anything. Forget it. Not Scotland experience at all. Can barely get the taste of Haggis out of my mouth!
Written 5 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

3 contributions
Better than expected food, decent show
Oct. 2019
I wasn't expecting much from the food, but it was actually pretty good, including the Haggis, which I expected to hate, but actually liked (the "address to Haggis" by the performers was also entertaining). The show was good, and most of the performers were engaging and amusing, but Scotland doesn't have a huge music tradition, so it did seem to go longer than necessary. The dancers were sweet, and put a lot of energy into it, but looked like a high school troupe, and the lead singer was better as a host than a performer (but again, the songs were like standards, which isn't really my thing). Bagpiper was really good. None of the six of us were sorry we went (ranging from 25-70), and we felt like we got our money's worth, but we've seen better shows elsewhere.
Written 21 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Lawrenceburg, IN926 contributions
Oct. 2019
First of all, let me give credit where credit is due: some of the musicianship was very good…especially the guy who played the accordion. The gal who did most of the vocals and the guy who played violin were also good.

That said, if you open the dictionary to the word “cheesy” you’d probably find a reference to the “Spirit of Scotland” show…because it is THE definition of cheesy. From the non-stop, plastered-on smile of Bruce Davies, to the less-than-mediocre food, the entire show is a visual and culinary assault on the senses (not to mention an insult to people’s intelligence). And as good as some of the musicians were, fact is most of the music was pre-recorded (I’m a musician…and in my book that’s nothing short of cheating).

As for the show’s content, it’s basically just hodge-podge of songs…no definable story, and nothing that draws you in. A quarter of the time a movie screen would come down, and they would play a video of scenes from around Scotland (accompanied, of course, by pre-recorded music)…..stuff that anyone can see on YouTube. They also paid homage to the Scottish singer, the late Andrew Stewart (who died in 1993). Truth be told, it was rather awkward: most people didn’t have a clue who he was, nor did they appear to care. As for the dancing, yes, it was very good, and the little girl who danced was very cute (but they played her up almost to the point of exploitation…I was waiting for someone to walk around with a tin cup).

The “Addressing the Haggis” bit was insulting; the people who write this show must think everyone in the audience is a moron. Ridiculously scripted, and totally unnecessary, it’s just a way to kill about 15 minutes.

As for the food, well, the desert was good, and the beef was marginally acceptable. That’s it. I admit I’m not a haggis fan (think hot, greasy Alpo), but I realize it’s an acquired taste, and I imagine some is better than others (or at least I would hope so). That said, there’s a reason why they give people only a small dollop of the stuff. Looking down the table as people were trying it, ninety percent had a look of despair as they took a bite, and that look quickly turned into a grimace. Most people only took one small bite and left the rest, which seems like an awful waste (I mean someone has to like the stuff, right?).

Kudos to the staff. For serving such a large crowd, in such a short amount of time, they did an exceptional job. The only issue was with one meal for someone in our group who has severe food allergies. When they brought out the main, the server just plopped it down in front of the first person they came to; they either didn’t know, or didn’t bother to find out who it was supposed to go to (fact is, the person it was supposed to go to was sitting at the complete opposite end of the table). It’s obvious they need to come up with a better system.

While I had to endure only one performance (thank goodness), I sincerely believe this show is exactly the same night after night…word for word, note for note. There’s absolutely no spontaneity whatsoever, and the smiles were about as fake as it gets. To be honest, I would have enjoyed it a lot more had there been just a small band playing and singing traditional Scottish music with an explanation as to the meaning and origin of the songs (without all the ridiculously staged fanfare).

The worst part about this show is that it assumes to know what people think of when they think of Scotland. Sadly, it misses the mark, big time. Not everyone who visits Scotland is so shallow that they buy into the clichés.

Looking back now I have to laugh. At the beginning of the show they announced that taking video was prohibited. After sitting though ninety minutes or so of this farce the big question is, why in God’s name would anybody want to sit through it again?
Written 14 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Joanne T
Ontario, Canada19 contributions
Lively & Entertaining
Sep. 2019
We attended the Spirit of Scotland Show at The Jam House in mid September as part of our itinerary on our bus tour through Scotland. We were greeted at the door by a piper in traditional dress and escorted into our reserved seating. We had a good choice of meal items and wine with dinner. Right from the initial toast to the haggis to the end of the show it was full of great entertainment and entertainers. The dancers, singers and those who played instruments were super entertaining. They also included the audience in one of their dance routines. It was amusing to say the least. It would definitely recommend seeing this if you have opportunity.
Written 1 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Livingston, NJ47 contributions
Fun show
Sep. 2019 • Couples
We did this as part of a CIE tour and enjoyed the entertaining show. The food was fine and the service was great for us.
My wife is a vegetarian and there was nothing she could eat on the set menu. Our waiter who said it was his first day went out of his way to make sure she was able to eat and when he was bringing deserts out, remembered to bring her a separate dairy free desert.
I mean the place is packed, a little crazy and he totally remembered and took care of us. Thank you.

If you come upon this show; sit back, have a meal and enjoy the show.
Written 30 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

1 contribution
Could've been better.
Sep. 2019 • Family
The only reason I gave this place 3 stars was because of the dinner show. The show was awesome and funny. The food and service, however, was terrible. The waitress was rude and the food was sub-par. Wouldn't recommend.
Written 26 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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