Showing posts from October, 2016

4 Stars for Mum’s the Word at the Hen and Chickens Theatre


I never went to a boarding school. Age eleven I was down the local comprehensive five days a week and returning to my loving home for dinner in the evening. However, those that did go through the public school system often say it had a profound effect on their lives and they made relationships that lasted forever. I used the word relationships there deliberately for, as can be seen in Robert Hughes’ new play Mum’s the Word at the Hen and Chickens Theatre, you can’t always call these coming together of people friendship. The ‘Wine and Dandy’ bar in Soho and Jess (Danielle Williams) is sat at a table by herself, a waiter approaches and kisses her. Even in Soho, this overly familiar type of behaviour would normally be considered odd, but the waiter is in fact, Jess’s boyfriend Aidan (Lewis Clarke). Tonight though Aiden is just a waiter as Jess is meeting some friends – well when I say friends, I actuall…

5 Stars for Apocalypse Cruise Ship Love Affair at Above The Arts Theatre


Apocalypse Cruise Ship Love Affair (c) David Monteith Hodge, Photographise Cruising, and by that I mean getting into some sort of boat and traveling aimlessly on the high seas, has become a very popular pastime, in fact over 21 million people – 60% of them American – go on a cruise every year. A quick Google (other search engines are available) search reveals that there are cruises designed for every type of person. For example, there is Blues Cruise, which has just docked in Soho’s Above the Arts Theatre, which seems to cater for those that would like an Apocalypse Cruise Ship Love Affair. Beginning with a flashback to the night when Captain Bleufonde (Joe McArdle) lost the love of his life overboard. Twenty years later and Blues Cruise journey no 666 and with warnings about the end of the world coming soon, Captain Bleufonde is de…

Jasmin Vardimon Company’s Pinocchio – Review


Jasmin Vardimon Company’s Pinocchio – Photo credit Tristram Kenton There’s something about theatre aimed at children that always surprises me. I think part of it is seeing the hordes of sprogs rushing into the foyer, parents or other unfortunate relatives trying to keep up, then the noise that a few hundred children can generate while waiting for the show to start is quite phenomenal. However, if the production is a good one, then as soon as the curtain goes up, the noise level goes down and the attention to the stage becomes 100%, proving once more the magical properties of the theatre. I mention this because last night I was privileged to see this effect at work once more when I went to Sadler’s Wells to see Jasmin Vardimon’s new production of Pinocchio. First things first, forget Walt Disney, there is no cute cricket singing ‘When You Wish Upon a Star’ in this production. Instead, Jasmine and her …