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Gaiety Theatre

Thrilled to perform again at the Gaiety Theatre 150 150 mhamer

Thrilled to perform again at the Gaiety Theatre

Jimmy Cricket, his wife May and friends at the Mercure Hotel in Ayr

Jimmy Cricket stayed at the Mercure Hotel in Ayr when he appeared at the town’s Gaiety Theatre for the first time in more than 20 years.

Jimmy Cricket in Ayr

Viva Variety was produced by Scottish entertainer Liam Dolan, who is well known for his tribute show to one of Scotland’s most revered double acts, Frankie and Josie.

The show was scheduled for a Friday evening, Saturday afternoon (matinee) and Saturday evening in mid-August.

This meant that most of the cast stayed overnight on the Friday at the Mercure Hotel, which was a stone’s throw away from the theatre.

Famous entertainer Jimmy, 69, said he was “thrilled” to be back after his long absence  from the Gaiety Theatre in the West Scotland coastal town.

The group photo (top) was taken in the hotel’s bar on the Friday night. Alongside Jimmy and his wife, May, are Liam and his partner, Elliot (who choreographed the show), Liam’s cousin, Kevin, and his wife, Stephanie (who are friends of the Krankies), and Jim. Above right, Jimmy enjoys a sit-down on the promenade.

Viva Variety show in Ayr ‘bodes well for the future’ 150 150 mhamer

Viva Variety show in Ayr ‘bodes well for the future’

Viva Variety took place at the Gaiety Theatre in Ayr

Jimmy Cricket was delighted with his long-awaited return to the Gaiety Theatre in Ayr.

The well-known comedian went back to the south-west coast of Scotland to feature in Viva Variety, with local celebrity Liam Dolan who is also the producer of the show.

Jai McDowall, the Scottish singer-songwriter who won Britain’s Got Talent in 2011, also performed in the three shows, which took place earlier this month, along with the Dansarena Dancers who won a local talent search called Gaiety Got Talent and with it the chance to appear alongside Jimmy and co.

The Gaiety Theatre is a venue Jimmy appeared at for a week of shows in the 1980s when his special guest star was EastEnders actor Shane Ritchie.

In recent times the theatre had a long spell when it was closed, with no prospect of it re-opening. However, a local consortium formed a campaign to revive the theatre and their aim was realised a couple of years ago when the front doors opened again for live entertainment.

Viva Variety took place at the Gaiety Theatre in Ayr

Jimmy hailed the recent shows as a great return of  the revue-type attraction to a theatre that was the mainstay of summer seasons in Scotland in bygone years.

He said: “Liam Dolan majestically combined the local acts with professional artists who all mixed together well to provide a great spectacle for those who attended the show.

“I was pleased that over the three shows organised – which included a Saturday afternoon performance as well – a healthy crowd turned up to support each one.

“This certainly bodes well for the future and I feel there is definitely an appetite from the people of Ayr and its visitor market for the Gaiety Theatre to build upon for a return of Viva Variety in 2016.”

The photographs on this page and in the slideshow above were taken by Ayr-based photographer David Kerr.

Viva Variety took place at the Gaiety Theatre in Ayr