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Showing posts from November, 2017

King Tut: A Pyramid Panto at The King’s Head Theatre

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/190167/king-tut-a-pyramid-panto-kings-head-theatre/

Walk like Egyptian. Photo William Knight Have you ever tried to explain to someone that isn’t from the UK what a pantomime is and why it is such a part of the Christmas celebration? Obviously, if you are talking to an American, it’s fairly easy. Point at the White House and they will get the concept of pantomime very quickly. Given a conversation I had recently, it’s not that easy to get the concept over. So, my advice is to forget trying to explain and take your interlocutor to the King’s Head where Charles Court opera are putting on their Christmas pantomime King Tut. Egypt 1922 and explorer Howard Carter (Matt R J Ward) is looking for the tomb of Tutankhamun. His party consists of Lord Conniving (John Savournin/Matthew Kellett) who is financing the expedition, and is attending along with his ward Evelyn (Francesca Fenech). There are also a couple of locals in the shape a Porter (Philip Lee) and h…

5 Star Review of Boys in the Buff – The Concert at the King’s Head Theatre

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https://www.lastminutetheatretickets.com/londonwestend/review-boys-in-the-buff-the-concert-kings-head-theatre/

Boys in the Buff – The Concert Sit back, relax and take a moment to imagine the perfect body. How it looks in daylight, at night time, in various different sets of clothes and, of course, undressed. Now, open your eyes and compare your fantasy with your own body. Unless your name is Narcissus, the chances are there will be some differences between dream body and real body. All of us get upset with our bodies about something. Too short, too tall, too slim, too fat, etc and this is the message that is at the heart of Boys in the Buff – The Concert which is enjoying a limited run at the King’s Head Theatre. Boys in the Buff – The Concert isn’t a play or anything sensible like that. Instead , it is a really fun evening of entertainment, song, dance and jokes all hosted by the wonderful Miss Diana Diamonte (Shani Cantor) who, with the help of her boys – Phil (Eli Caldwell), Dan (Ada…

Priscilla Queen of the Desert Review – Bridewell Theatre London

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/189516/priscilla-queen-of-the-desert-review-bridewell-theatre-london/

Sedos Priscilla Winter is definitely with us. It’s cold, windy and the shops are full of Christmas tat. This is the time of year that the world needs something spectacular to bring a bit of happiness and raise the spirits. And, right now, the brightest show in town is Priscilla Queen of the Desert which has just opened at the Bridewell Theatre. Sydney, Australia and drag queen Mitzi Mitosis (Richard Upton) needs a break. Luckily, he has received a phone call from Marion (Natalie Harding-Moore), the manager of the Alice Springs Casino. Among other things, she wants Mitzi – real name Anthony “Tick” Belrose – to come and perform at the casino. Tick leaps at the idea and ropes in fellow drag queen Felicia Jollygoodfellow (Ian Thiele-Long) and Trans woman Bernadette (Alexander McKinven) to join him on the epic 1,723 miles (2,773 kilometres) journey. Bernadette and Felicia – real name Ad…

The Importance of Being Earnest at Brockley Jack Studio Theatre

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https://www.lastminutetheatretickets.com/londonwestend/the-importance-of-being-earnest-brockley-jack-studio-theatre/


The Importance of Being Earnest
Shakespeare’s plays are very flexible. They can be set in pretty much any time and location and they will still on the whole work. Other writers are not so lucky and are really fixed in time and space. Agatha Christie and Oscar Wilde are two authors that come to mind in this instance. And this theory of mine was borne out with a visit to the Brockley Jack Studio to see The Importance of Being Earnest. It’s nearly time for tea and butler Lane (Daniel Desiano-Plummer) is setting out the cucumber sandwiches and bread & butter. His master Algernon Moncrieff (Daniel Hall) is expecting guests for tea and wants everything to be perfect. Unfortunately, before they arrive, Algernon gets a visit from his good friend Earnest Worthing (Riley Jones). Normally a welcome distraction in Algernon’s life, Earnest could not have arrived at a worse time a…

4 Star Review of XPOSED – LGBTQ+ New Writing Night Hen & Chickens Theatre

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/189248/review-xposed-lgbtq-new-writing-night-hen-chickens-theatre/

Fluid (Jack O’Neill) There are times when I really wish I could write. Not these reviews but something worthwhile. They say everybody has a book inside of them but I’ve yet to find mine. As for writing a play, fat chance. Maybe that is why I enjoy nights such as Xposed which was a new writing night of eight short plays at the Hen & Chickens Theatre. The evening started with a play called Fluid, written by Nick Maynard, Directed by Shafeeq Shajahan and performed by Jack O’Neill. This was a monologue with Jack’s character being a rough, ‘chavy’ boy from Bolton on a stage supposedly performing a rap for the eager audience – which included his mum, brother, girlfriend and friends. Only our lad has other ideas and is going to use this opportunity to tell everyone something that he has been hiding. Immediately the play started, my thoughts turned to “oh great, another coming out play”, …

Review of Awkward Conversations With Animals I’ve F*cked

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/188725/review-awkward-conversations-with-animals-ive-fcked/

Some things really should not be written about. If a writer has the temerity to write about the subject, then that writing definitely should not be turned into a play. And, if it is turned into a play, it should never be performed with the original title. And if all the above have been ignored, then we are left with Rob Hayes one-act play Awkward Conversations With Animals I’ve F****d at the Lion & Unicorn Theatre. Told as series of individual monologues, Awkward Conversations With Animals I’ve F****d is the story of Bobby (Linus Karp), a young man with serious social issues. Bobby lives alone in a bedsit with very few possessions and the first time we meet him, he has spent a night of ‘passion’ with a dog he met wandering the streets the previous evening. Whilst the conversation is one-sided, it flows rather well. Bobby is obviously an intelligent and articulate young man who is tacklin…

Review of Hiding Heidi (A Tale of Love and Hate in Stoke on Trent)

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/188466/review-hiding-heidi-a-tale-of-love-and-hate-in-stoke-on-trent/


Hiding Heidi (A Tale of Love and Hate in Stoke on Trent)
On the 23rd June 2016, the UK went to the polls to decide whether the country should stay in or leave the European Union. The vote went 52% to vote leave. The political fallout of the referendum is still being felt as the negotiations start on the Brexit process and will no doubt continue to rumble on over the next few years. In his one-act play Hiding Heidi (A Tale of Love and Hate in Stoke on Trent), Ian Dixon Potter has tried to envisage what life will be like once Brexit has happened and the UK is once again outside of the European Union. Ralph (Richard de Lisle) is trying to find a new carer for his mother Dorothy (Maxine Howard). Unfortunately, with the expulsion of all the foreigners, this is not an easy task. However, he thinks he has found the perfect candidate in Heidi (Siobhan Ward). She has loads of experience, is…

Review of Intermission Youth Theatre’s Double Trouble

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/187996/review-intermission-youth-theatres-double-trouble/




Intermission Youth Theatre’s Double Trouble
Language is continually evolving. From the primordial grunts of cavemen, through to the highly technical words of Professor Brian Cox, we have moved on considerably in our communication over the years. However, the one thing we do know is that it is impossible to mix the English in common usage from different eras. So, for example, a play that has some of the main characters speaking English from the 16th Century whilst others just wouldn’t work would it? Well go and see Intermission Youth Theatre’s production of Double Trouble at St Saviours, Knightsbridge, and then tell me what you think. At a UK entry point, two police officers (Madeleine Manace Bakofu and Micah Loboun) are ‘welcoming’ a new bunch of migrants to the country. Unfortunately, the border has now been closed and so, this ragtag group are going to be deported back to their country of or…

Review of The Dirty Thirty at the Rosemary Branch Theatre

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/187732/review-the-dirty-thirty-the-rosemary-branch-theatre/

There have been some bonkers idea in the world of theatre. You know, things like putting a roller skate race round the auditorium, or basing a story on a boy that can dance while the miner’s strike goes on. But one of the strangest ideas I’ve seen in a theatre is putting on thirty plays in one hour but that is exactly what Degenerate Fox attempted to do at the Rosemary Branch Theatre with their show The Dirty 30. Degenerate Fox are seven very talented performers – Desiree Burch, Daniel Collard, Laura Killeen, Gabrielle MacPherson, Sergio Maggiolo, Graham Self and Jay Wakely – have written and produced thirty mini plays, each lasting roughly two minutes. The plays are numbered and when the audience arrives they are given a list and as each play finishes, the audience shouts out the number of the next one they want performing. So, thirty plays, in a random order over the space of an hour. Soun…

Review of A Murder is Announced at the Churchill Theatre Bromley

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/187702/review-a-murder-is-announced-the-churchill-theatre-bromley/

Louise Jameson as Miss Marple Apart from my mother, the only other woman with whom I’ve had a lifelong relationship is Dame Agatha Christie. Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, Tommy & Tuppence, I’ve read them all. I’ve seen the movies and TV shows and been to see The Mousetrap twice, so I was very excited to head to the Churchill Theatre Bromley when the touring version of A Murder is Announced dropped in. Friday morning at Little Paddocks, Chipping Gleghorn meant one thing to Dora Bunner (Sarah Thomas) and that was the arrival of the local paper which she would pour over learning everything that was important in the village. This particular Friday was no different except that in the small ads there was a very strange announcement “A murder is announced and will take place on Friday, October 29th, at Little Paddocks, at 6:30 p.m. Friends accept this, the only intimation.” Letitia Blackl…

Review of The Red Lion at Trafalgar Studios

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/187632/review-the-red-lion-trafalgar-studios/

The Red Lion by Patrick Marber – Trafalgar Studios Ah, the beautiful game. I am of course referring to football at this point. A game that can be played by anybody who has a ball. Two people get together, coats come off and become goal posts and the humblest cobbled courtyard is suddenly Wembley Stadium on Cup Final Day. People are born into football and will faithfully follow their favoured team around the world to support them, sharing the players’ highs and lows as if they too were on the pitch. But there is another side to football. A side dominated by money, where titles can be won by the depth of the owner’s pockets. Where players are just resources to be bought and sold on the open market and fans are treated shamefully by teams that have three new strips every year knowing the punters outside will have to buy each one or face the ridicule of their fellows in the stands. These two sides of football…

Review of The Mysterious Gentleman at the Courtyard Theatre

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/187451/review-the-mysterious-gentleman-the-courtyard-theatre/




The Mysterious Gentleman (c) James Hall
The supernatural includes all that cannot be explained by the laws of nature, including things characteristic of or relating to ghosts, gods, or other types of spirits and other non-material beings, or to things beyond nature. Of course, most supernatural things can be explained away when looked at in the cold light of day but can everything? Are some things truly supernatural? Well, maybe you will be able to decide for yourself after seeing The Mysterious Gentleman at The Courtyard Theatre. The American Davenport brothers have been wowing audiences with their spiritualist demonstrations. This is Victorian England and the populace is going loopy over the supernatural. Mediums are popping up all over the place and seances are the latest after dinner entertainment. The time is right for fakes and charlatans to come in and make money out of people’s wis…

Review of Three Mothers at Waterloo East Theatre, London

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https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/187131/review-three-mothers-waterloo-east-theatre-london/

Europe is awash with migrants. War, genocide, economic conditions and deportation have caused a mass of dispossessed people to be wandering around seeking everything from a new life away from fear to just somewhere warm to rest their head. The funny thing is, anyone reading this opening will believe they already know about the migrant issue. It’s on the news all the time and has become a bit of political hot potato. But, the current situation is not the first time Europe has suffered a migrant crisis. You only need to go back seventy years to find another time when migration was a major problem for the countries of Europe. Today and the past are at the heart of Matilda Velevitch’s play Three Mothers at the Waterloo East Theatre. Told as three intertwining monologues, Three Mothers tells the story of three women separated by time and space. First, there is Khady (Clare Perkins) who lives in a v…