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Showing posts from January, 2017

3 Star Review of Death Takes a Holiday – Charing Cross Theatre

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/164967/review-death-takes-a-holiday-charing-cross-theatre/

According to Earthwatch website ecologogy.com, 151,600 people die each day. Now, that’s quite a statistic and only goes to emphasise the fact that on the day you are born you start to die. Okay, not the most cheery way to start a review but just imagine if it was your job to go and collect more than 151,000 people every day and take them to the next stage, whatever that may be. Now, it’s 1922 and you have collected all those that died during The Great War and the Spanish flu epidemic that followed. Wouldn’t you be wanting a bit of downtime at some point? To see how that turns out, you need to pop along to the Charing Cross Theatre where they are presenting the European premiere of Death Takes a Holiday (Thom Southerland directs, music and lyrics by Maury Yeston and book by Peter Stone and Thomas Meehan). Duke Vittorio Lamberti (Mark Inscoe) and his family are driving home to their hilltop vi…

5 Star Review for Out There On Fried Meat Ridge Rd at the White Bear Theatre

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/164377/out-there-on-fried-meat-ridge-rd-at-the-white-bear-theatre/
On Fried Meat Ridge Road (incidentally, a real road in West Virginia) is a run down sort of motel owned by a grizzled old-timer called Flip (Michael Wade) who is happy to call a spade a spade and for whom political correctness is something that happened to other people. Still, he runs a pretty tight motel, especially with the help of hillbilly handyman J.D. (Keith Stevenson). J.D. is a friendly soul and has recently advertised for a roommate to join him and partake of his speciality food, tuna sandwiches and a Lee Marvin (vodka and Mountain Dew). The timing is perfect for down at luck Mitch (Robert Moloney) who had not had a good time recently and is looking for somewhere to live that will widen his social circle. Whether he really wants to widen that circle to include trailer trash couple Tommy (Dan Hilderbrand) and Marlene (Melanie Gray) who don’t exactly discuss their personal issu…
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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/164161/review-promises-promises-southwark-playhouse/

Neil Simon writes the book, Hal David writes the lyrics and Burt Bacharach writes the music. Put all this together and what do you get? A Tony award-winning musical that goes by the name of Promises, Promises that has returned to London and taken up residence at the Southwark Playhouse after an absence of nearly 50 years. Chuck Baxter (Gabriel Vick) is a junior accountant in a large insurance company. Although a lowly, often overlooked individual, Chuck has aspirations to climb the ladder to executive level. Unfortunately, his life isn’t living up to his dreams until one day, one of the executives (exec) finds out that Chuck rents a studio bachelor pad on West 67th Street, and asks to borrow it, so he can take his lady friend there for a spot of ‘afternoon delight’. Chuck, in his eagerness to ingratiate himself with the higher ups, agrees and soon news of the local bolt-hole spreads amongst the ex…

Sex With a Stranger at the Pleasance Theatre – 4 Star Review

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/164080/sex-with-a-stranger-pleasance-theatre-review/


I remember being in my twenties. A lot of my weekends were spent out in town with my friends with two rather basic plans in mind. Either get very drunk or pick up someone. Was this something I wanted to do? Well, yes and no. Part of me enjoyed the fun and the thrill of the chase but at the same time, I was aware that as a twenty-something I was expected to behave in a certain way. Now, I’m not just pontificating here but providing an introduction to Stefan Golaszewski’s play Sex With A Stranger which is currently having a run out at the Pleasance Theatre. Told in a series of non-linear scenes, Sex With A Stranger tells the story of Adam (Tomm Melody), his girlfriend Ruth (Emily Thornton) and Grace (Rebecca Rayne) a young lass picked up by Adam in a club during a ‘lads’ night out. We follow Adam and Grace as they wend their drunken way back to Grace’s place – via a night bus and kebab shop. And we …

3 Star Review of Fiona Doyle’s play Abigail at The Bunker

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/163247/review-fiona-doyles-play-abigail-the-bunker/

Abigail at The Bunker – Tia Bannon and Mark Rose – Image courtesy of Anton Belmonté “Some enchanted evening you may see a stranger. You may see a stranger across a crowded room. And somehow you know, you know even then…..” and so the song goes on. Often it is true as well. Two people meet, something clicks and something starts between them. All well and good you might think. But people are complicated things. Everyone comes loaded with a trolley full of luggage behind them which affects their relationships in profound and sometimes quite unexpected ways. Not sure if I’m spouting a load of drivel here? Well, pop along to The Bunker and the world premiere of Fiona Doyle’s play Abigail then decide. A man (Mark Rose) and a woman (Tia Bannon) meet. There is a distinct difference in age between them but despite this, there is an obvious attraction between them. They get involved in a relationship together…

BU21 at the Trafalgar Studio Two – 4 Star Review

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/162872/bu21-trafalgar-studio-two-review/

BU21: Theatre503, Clive Kene, Graham O’Mara and Florence Roberts. Image courtesy of David Monteith-Hodge You may remember a few years ago on Emmerdale they dropped a plane on the village. As you would expect in a soap opera, the effect was devastating for a good month or so but then people and stories moved on and it never gets mentioned anymore. Real life is of course, different to television and it takes a long time for individuals to recover from a devastating event, a theme which is examined in Steven Slade’s BU21 at the Trafalgar Studios. There has been a terrorist incident in the UK. Using a scarily easily obtained hand-held surface to air launcher, a terrorist cell has shot down a commercial airline which has crashed to the ground wiping out part of Fulham. Six people connected to the events of that day come together to tell their story and explain the effects of the terrorist action. Graham (Graham O’M…

5 Star Review for The Kite Runner: ‘Excellent writing combined with a fantastic interpretation…’

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/162673/the-kite-runner-wyndhams-theatre-review/ You have to love the wide variety of shows currently in London’s West End. Musicals may dominate but there are some fantastic straight plays on as well. And 2017 has started well with The Kite Runner opening its doors at Wyndham’s Theatre. Based on Khaled Hosseini’s 2003 novel of the same name, The Kite Runner takes the audience on a roughly thirty-year journey through the life of Amir (Ben Turner). Amir is a middle-class Afghan boy living with his merchant father (Emilio Doorgasingh). The two live together but are not very close. Amir believes it is because his father blames him for the fact his mother died in childbirth. Amir is not really interested in business and wishes to pursue a career in writing. His father doesn’t understand this and often chides the boy for his perceived weakness and lack of courage. Luckily, Amir can talk to his father’s closest friend Rahim Khan (Nicholas Khan) who is the o…

4 Star Review of Glockenspiel at Tristan Bates Theatre

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/158767/review-glockenspiel-tristan-bates-theatre/

Military life isn’t for everyone. Even in peacetime, it puts a lot of strain on not only the serviceman or woman but also their family and friends. In a time of conflict, that strain gets even more intense. This gets worse if the service man/woman doesn’t fully believe in the cause and justness of the action they are being ordered to take. However, possibly the most difficult part of military life is when it ends. After a lifetime of service, adjusting to civilian life can be traumatic, to say the least. All of these themes and more are examined in Steven Dykes Glockenspiel at Soho’s Tristan Bates Theatre. Glockenspiel tells the story of the funerals of three current and former members of the American armed forces. Whilst none of the deceased died on active service, they are all entitled to and receive a military funeral. At each, the Defence Department has supplied an Honour Guard (Aruna Jollah and L…