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Did you know JM Barrie wrote Peter Pan as a metaphor for WWI?

In Features, London theatre, Opinion, Plays, Quotes, Reviews by Terri PaddockLeave a Comment

did you know that JM Barrie wrote Peter Pan as a metaphor for the “war to end all wars”? Of course, you did. It’s obvious: the Lost Boys are the “lost generation” of the conflict, the mothers who leave their windows open for boys who will never come home are the grieving parents of the war dead, the fairy dust is the deadly mustard gas that allowed young soldiers to fly away from the battlefield and to the heaven of Never Land….

TEDDY – Southwark Playhouse

In London theatre, Musicals, Plays, Reviews by Jonathan BazLeave a Comment

Teddy is a new piece of theatre from Tristan Bernays and Dougal Irvine that sets out to depict the Teddy Boy era of 1950’s London. It’s all about rock and roll and austerity in post-war Britain, but much like the Teddy Boys it tells of, the play’s slickly packaged, but scratch its surface, and there’s a show unsure of itself and seemingly still seeking its own identity.

BETA TESTING – Udderbelly, Southbank

In Circus, Edinburgh Festival, London theatre, Reviews by Libby PurvesLeave a Comment

With August looming over the horizon, there comes a time when the critic needs to harden up, sit on some prickly astroturf leaning on a dustbin, eating a falafal wrap and staring up forebodingly at an enormous upturned purple inflatable cow. Just to remember that it’ll soon be time to brace up for the Edinburgh Fringe. Luckily, London has its own Udderbelly season now, with every kind of oddity and adventure and show-off and physical-theatre explosion. So down I went to see the Circus Geeks explain the nature and psychology of juggling.

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FEATURED SHOW: Dogs of War at the Old Red Lion, Reviews are in!

In Features, London theatre, Native, Plays, Quotes, Reviews by Terri PaddockLeave a Comment

Have you seen the raft of four-star reviews for our Featured Show? The world premiere of Dogs of War, which is now running at London’s Old Red Lion Theatre, has also been nominated for three Awards, including Most Promising New Playwright for author Tim Foley.  Scroll down for links and excerpts from some of our favourite reviews. “First we had one, …

SCOTCH & SODA – London Wonderground

In Circus, London theatre, Reviews by Katharine KavanaghLeave a Comment

Spiegeltent, London Wonderground; 4th June 2015 Tonight there is a party. An impromptu, informal, flowing all-night kind of affair. Down on the docks; in the back of a warehouse. Home-brewed jazz and distilled circus spectacle slide like liquor through the veins of Scotch & Soda. This is a collaboration between David Carberry and Chelsea McGuffin’s Company […]

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DISCO – Victoria Pub, London

In London theatre, Plays, Reviews by Jonathan BazLeave a Comment

If you like your reviews as short and sour as a tequila slammer, let me say just this: site-specific DISCO, that ran for three days from 2nd June, isn’t going to impress those who thrive off imaginative and original storytelling. And the drawn-out tale of online dating, embarrassingly pushy mates and dance floor awkwardness that sits at the heart of this evening certainly won’t revolutionise your understanding of life, the universe or anything in between.


In London theatre, Reviews by Matt MerrittLeave a Comment

I’m constantly amazed that these days, if I miss a major production of a play in the West End, I can generally pop along to the local cinema and watch it there or even in some cases buy a copy to watch at my leisure. As might be expected, the UK’s two premier producers of Shakespeare have been at the forefront of filming staged productions, and when two box sets of shows from Shakespeare’s Globe arrived a few weeks ago for review, I was delighted to visit a number of productions that pre-date my time reviewing theatre.

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What are the challenges of populating Bedford Falls onstage?

In Features, Interviews, London theatre, Opinion, Photos, Plays, Quotes, Regional theatre, Touring by Terri PaddockLeave a Comment

During my visit to the rehearsal rooms of It’s a Wonderful Life on radio, which launches a new UK tour this week, I also got to chat to three of the incredibly hard-working, six-strong ensemble cast about their experiences creating characters in a community we’re all familiar with.

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It’s a Wonderful Life – coming to a stage near you – isn’t just for Christmas

In Features, Inspiring people, Interviews, London theatre, Opinion, Plays, Quotes, Regional theatre, Touring by Terri PaddockLeave a Comment

Frank Capra’s 1946 classic It’s a Wonderful Life, starring James Stewart as everyman George Bailey, is probably my favourite film of all time. It’s certainly the one I’ve seen more times than any other. Quite frankly, I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve seen it. Definitely once – or sometimes twice, thrice or more – every Christmas. [Bear with me, this does have a theatrical link so keep reading…]

NEWS: Further casting announced for Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company season

In London theatre, News, Plays by Matt MerrittLeave a Comment

Tom Bateman, Jessie Buckley, Jack Colgrave Hirst, Hadley Fraser, Michael Pennington, Zoe Rainey, Miranda Raison, John Shrapnel, Kathryn Wilder and Jimmy Yuill join the cast of the Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company productions of The Winter’s Tale and Harlequinade at Garrick Theatre. The two productions will play in repertory from 17 October 2015 until 16 January 2016.

NEWS: Extra tickets released for Farinelli & The King

In London theatre, News, Plays by Matt MerrittLeave a Comment

Onstage seating for the West End transfer of Claire van Kampen’s critically-acclaimed new play Farinelli and the King, starring Mark Rylance, will be released to the general public on Friday 5 June 2015 at 10am. Additionally, further seats will be released for all performances, including accessibly priced £10 tickets located in all parts of the house.

NEWS: AIDS education play As Is transfers to West End’s Trafalgar Studios

In Inspiring people, London theatre, News, Opinion, Plays by Matt MerrittLeave a Comment

If you’ve ever taken time to listen to director Andrew Keates talking about being diagnosed as HIV positive, if you’ve read his tweets or impassioned blog posts or in any way been influenced by his fantastic and inspiring positivity then you’ll know that his story started with this play. Now he’s bringing it to the Trafalgar Studios in an all-new production to highlight a subject that is still seen to be taboo by too many people.

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NEWS: Singer Pixie Lott makes West End debut in Breakfast at Tiffany’s

In London theatre, News, Plays, Press Releases, Regional theatre, Touring by Press ReleasesLeave a Comment

Pixie Lott will star as Holly Golightly in a limited 12-week season of Breakfast at Tiffany’s at the Theatre Royal Haymarket in London’s West End in 2016. [Editor’s note: A previous version of Breakfast at Tiffany’s ran at the Haymarket in 2009, starring Anna Friel.] This will follow the first UK and Ireland tour of Truman Capote’s classic tale brought …

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NEWS: Beverley Knight to play Grizabella in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats

In London theatre, Musicals, News, Press Releases by Press ReleasesLeave a Comment

Beverley Knight is to star in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s record-breaking musical Cats to play the role of Grizabella. Returning to the London Palladium from 23 October 2015, Lloyd Webber’s record breaking Cats will run for a ten-week season until 2 January 2016. Tickets are from £20 with top price seats at £59.50 and children’s tickets at half price for Monday …

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NEWS: Father-son James and Jack Fox star in West End transfer of Roger Mortimer’s Dear Lupin

In London theatre, News, Plays, Press Releases, Regional theatre by Press ReleasesLeave a Comment

Father and son James Fox and Jack Fox star in this brand new stage adaptation of the best-selling Sunday Times Humour Book of the Year Dear Lupin, Letters to a Wayward Son, in which renowned journalist and author Roger Mortimer’s brilliantly hilarious, often touching and always generous letters to his unruly son Charlie are now vividly brought to life. The production transfers to the West End’s Apollo Theatre following a successful UK tour, opening on 3 August 2015, with previews from 30 July, and runs for a strictly limited eight-week season until 19 September.

DUNCTON WOOD – Union Theatre

In London theatre, Musicals, Reviews by Jonathan BazLeave a Comment

Duncton Wood is an ambitious musical from Mark Carroll, adapting the best-selling novel famously set in the meadowed world of Oxfordshire’s moles. In the micro-budget world of the Union Theatre, where the noise of passing trains over the arches above can occasionally be a distraction, here their rumble serves well to suggest the subterranean domain we are pitched into.