Best of the Blogs: The Mates give their verdicts on The Night of the Iguana, Shit-Faced Shakespeare, The Falcon’s Malteser & more

In Features, London theatre, Native, Opinion, Plays, Quotes, Regional theatre, Reviews, Sticky, Ticket recommendations by Lisa Martland

A large percentage of the theatre community may be heading up to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in the next week or so but our editor Lisa Martland’s Top Picks from the last week’s productions in the West End, London Fringe or beyond prove there’s plenty of diverse work to enjoy elsewhere.

London’s current love affair with iconic American drama continues with The Night of the Iguana at the Noel Coward Theatre which sees Clive Owen returning to the London stage (reviewed by Maryam Philpott), while Anne Cox finds an English classic at the Trafalgar Studios in the shape of English Touring Theatre and Theatre Royal Stratford East’s production of Peter Shaffer’s Equus.

The 40-plus affiliated bloggers who contribute to My Theatre Mates have also been busy having fun catching up with new plays and adaptations via The Falcon’s Malteser and Games for Lovers at The Vaults (Elaine Chapman and Emma Clarendon), plus new Mate Annie Davey and Stephanie Ressort discover there’s a few theatricals surprises to savour in the unpredictability of Shit-Faced Shakespeare’s Hamlet and Whodunnit (Rehearsed). Something for everyone.

The Night of the Iguana – Noel Coward Theatre, London
Maryam Philpott: “In a superb return to the stage, Clive Owen’s Larry is a haunted man, pursued by his “spook”, a kind of depression or devil that he can never escape.”
Shit-Faced Shakespeare: Hamlet – Leicester Square Theatre, London ★★★★
Annie Davey: “Having now experienced one first-hand, I can report that Shit-faced Hamlet is a genuine joy to watch, an evening of broken boundaries, teasing, audience participation, endless laughter and spontaneity. Highly recommended.”
Equus – Trafalgar Studios, London
★★★★
Anne Cox: “Director Ned Bennett’s piercing
use of light and sound in Equus at London’s Trafalgar Studios is unnerving, like forcing subliminal darts into the eyes of theatre-goers already appalled and enthralled by this dark and tragic story.”
The Falcon’s Malteser – The Vaults, London ★★★★
Elaine Chapman: “Director Lee Lyford has bought together a fine mixture of comedy, family fun and mystery to this latest adaptation by Feargus Woods Dunlop and the theatre company New Old Friends and James Seabright.”
Whodunnit (Unrehearsed) –
Park Theatre, London
Stephanie Ressort: “I was whooping when Damian Lewis was revealed as our inspector, dignity be damned! However, I will say that the show is designed in such a way that you’ll have a great night no matter who you get.”
Games for Lovers – The Vaults, London ★★★★
Emma Clarendon: “Smart and relatable, Ryan Craig’s Games for Lovers effectively examines just how our attitudes towards dating and relationships have changed in the 21st century – in particular highlighting how the way we approach them showcases our vulnerabilities.”
Vienna 1934-Munich 1938 –Ustinov Studio, Bath
Kris Hallett: “The few moments when the night comes alive, when the three performers gather around the piano to sing Brecht and Weill’s ‘Alabama Song’, for example, show what a different take on the evening could have achieved.”
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Lisa Martland
An editor, writer and critic, Lisa Martland is the founder of Vuelio top-ranked website Musical Theatre Review which she set up in 2013. She has largely single-handedly developed it into one of the UK’s must-read sites for professionals and expert followers of the sector. In 2018, Lisa also joined the Terri Paddock Group, taking on the role of editor for both MyTheatreMates and our sister musical theatre site Stage Faves. Formerly, she was deputy editor at The Stage Newspaper.

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Lisa Martland on FacebookLisa Martland on InstagramLisa Martland on RssLisa Martland on TwitterLisa Martland on Youtube
Lisa Martland
An editor, writer and critic, Lisa Martland is the founder of Vuelio top-ranked website Musical Theatre Review which she set up in 2013. She has largely single-handedly developed it into one of the UK’s must-read sites for professionals and expert followers of the sector. In 2018, Lisa also joined the Terri Paddock Group, taking on the role of editor for both MyTheatreMates and our sister musical theatre site Stage Faves. Formerly, she was deputy editor at The Stage Newspaper.