Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

The Ghosting of Rabbie Burns: Scottish bard gives dating advice in new play

ghosting rabbie burns

Haggis, neeps and dating advice. This year, the ghost of Rabbie Burns will help Aberdeen theatre fans get over their ex-partners.

Written by Gillian Duffy, The Ghosting of Rabbie Burns follows heartbroken author Emily Winters as she travels to her aunt’s cottage in Ayrshire to stop thinking about her cheating ex.

As she celebrates Burns Night alone, she wishes that the right man would show up. Then, she gets a visitation slightly different than what she had hoped for – the ghost of Rabbie Burns appears to give her some dating advice and it turns out he knows what he’s talking about.

Gillian, who studied English literature and history, loves to combine these two subjects to come up with creative ideas for new plays.

She said: “Burns is a real-life historical figure and that was really something that interested me. I’m also writing another show about Mary Shelley. I like mixing real-life historical characters in literature with fiction.”

Irish writer pens play on Scottish writer

Originally from Ireland, some may wonder why Gillian decided to write a play about Burns who is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland.

ghosting rabbie burns
Writer Gillian Duffy is excited to bring her play to Aberdeen, Elgin and Inverness.

She said: “He was a Scottish writer and I’m an Irish writer but I’m based here in Scotland. I’ve always been very interested in Burns, but there hasn’t been much focus on his personal life.

“Obviously, all his works have been covered and his poetry and songs are fantastic, but there hasn’t been much focus on his personal life – and he had quite a checkered life.

“He had a colourful social and romantic life. Although he was married, he had an awful lot of illegitimate children.

“He fitted a lot of into his 37 years and that’s what the play looks at.”

Modern-day vs 18th-century dating

The romantic comedy compares what dating used to be like back in the eighteenth century and how people find love in today’s world.

“The leading lady is a modern woman dealing with love and infidelity and getting over a relationship in the modern times,” said Gillian.

“It’s looking at Robert Burns – a figure from the eighteenth century – and his views on love, romance, infidelity, courting and marriage.”

With many people meeting their partners on online dating apps, the way people connect has changed completely. However, the play also looks at the universal things about love that Gillian believes will never change.

“Modern online dating is completely alien to Robert Burns, but then, some of the things he is talking about that would have been normal during his time wouldn’t be acceptable now,” said Gillian.

Don’t miss The Ghosting of Rabbie Burns at The Tivoli Theatre.

Featuring popular songs and poems

The writer was keen to feature the great songs and poems of Burns, such as My Love Is Like A Red Red Rose, Ae Fond Kiss, Charlie Is My Darlin and, of course, Auld Lang Syne, The Ghosting of Rabbie Burns.

Gillian said: “We’re covering his music, his songs and his lovely poetry. It may seem like it is a show that is maybe for older audiences and Burns fans, but because of ‘ghosting’ and Robert Burns appearing as a ghost, it’s hopefully a show that will attract younger audiences too.

“Ghosting is obviously a play on words, with the modern dating phrase to be ghosted.”

Romantic comedy ideal for post-Covid theatre trip

The show originally premiered in 2019, but due to Covid-19, the play is only just embarking on a national tour.

Gillian said: “The show is very much a romantic comedy. It’s a nice show for these times as it’s light and it’s a fun night out.

“We’ve been 100% dedicated so that this tour could go ahead. We really want to bring a night of comedy – whether it’s a date night or a girls’ night or a family night – to people.

“So it’s great that measures got relaxed and we got the good news. We’re going to be the opening show for most of the venues, which is exciting for them and for us.”

The 2022 run is directed by Scottish actor Jimmy Chisholm who plays Sonny Caplan in River City.

The show is directed by Jimmy Chisholm. Photo by Stuart Spence.

How to book tickets to see The Ghosting of Rabbie Burns

The show will travel to The Tivoli Theatre in Aberdeen on Tuesday February 15. Tickets can be purchased here. Sadly, the Elgin and Inverness tour dates were cancelled due to Covid-19 complications.

The Ghosting of Rabbie Burns isn’t the only show Gillian will be touring this year. Her comedy The Wedding Planners will visit Eden Court in Inverness on March 20, Elgin Town Hall on March 21, and The Tivoli Theatre in Aberdeen on April 10.

You might also like…

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]