This latest star-studded digital offering from Henry Filloux-Bennett and the Lawrence Batley Theatre is a pleasing comedy about the tribulations of putting on a post-pandemic production.
Theatres were in trouble over the whole of 2020, and many are still waiting for audiences to return to their pre-pandemic levels.
I remember a student I was once trying to get to read more saying “What’s the point, there are just too many books”. Perhaps I’m beginning to have the same reaction to digital theatre – there’s so much more of it out there than I had ever anticipated and although I think I can claim I’ve covered a fair amount of ground there is still plenty to get to grips with.
One of the pleasures — but also the risks — of being a theatre critic is that you come first to a new production, ready to form your own opinions on what you’ve seen, before you’ve already encountered or digested the opinions of others.
In Other Words was inspired by writer and performer Matthew Seager’s experiences volunteering in a care home before the pandemic. First performed in 2017 (when Theatre Things reviewed it during its run at The Hope Theatre), the critically acclaimed two-hander now returns in a new filmed version which is available to watch online from today.
New online theatre material keeps popping up all the time – or at least it eventually comes to my attention which amounts to much the same thing; this latest one did so by a somewhat circuitous route. My Boy Danny played at this year’s recent Camden Fringe as an online stream, but I managed to muddle the dates and therefore missed it.
Every person who has ever been diagnosed with cancer asks at some point “What do I do now?” and “How can I carry on?” While the ‘tropes’ of behaviour post-diagnosis are familiar to people as the five stages of grief, there is a world of difference between being ‘intellectually aware’ of such things and ‘living in the thick of it’…
Originally devised as an educational piece in the height of the Zoom era of the pandemic, Alfie James’ My Boy Danny will have its live performance debut at the Lion & Unicorn next month.
It is not with a little sense of surprise that I found myself yesterday experiencing my 800th online production which is the subject of this review. Back in April 2020 I, probably along with the vast majority of people, was only expecting the virus problem to last a matter of weeks and yet here we are and here I am still reviewing daily after 535 days.
One of the huge advantages of online theatre over the last eighteen months or so has been being able to catch up with plays that any self-respecting reviewer should have seen but for whatever reason hasn’t. My Night With Reg was first produced in 1994 (missed it), has been revived since (missed them) and even turned into a TV film (guess what?)
The Greek myths have endured across the centuries partly because they are timeless stories that can be endlessly updated and reinvented.
I recently wrote to every major theatre chain in London to ask to see their COVID safety risk assessments and ventilation plans.
This new production of Maltby and Shire’s Closer Than Ever just about gets there, though it occasionally struggles to break through the digital form.
I’ve now tackled a very high percentage of shows on the regular list so I’m going to make a rather more concerted effort to engage with those on the junior version and get this up to the same level. I thought I’d start by heading for one where the title had long intrigued me.
As it’s a recorded stream, you’re at liberty to choose your own encore moments and replay any numbers which particularly take your fancy – and there are bound to be several of those.*
During the 20th century, absurdism and surrealism surfaced in literature to make pertinent points about human nature and ‘the real world’. Prime examples include Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis and by George Orwell’s Animal Farm. In both cases, anthropomorphism features – a state of affairs that is tonally ‘taken for granted’.
The twin themes of social justice and climate activism are explored in this piece from Fehinti Balogun/Complicité.
This cinematic adaptation of Everybody’s Talking About Jamie is fabulously enjoyable, led by a fine performance by Max Harwood.
Do these two pieces push the idea of audio theatre to its limits? Probably and the results are highly pleasing
The first tranche of Young Vic Digital consists of pieces written in response to a main house production. Here they are in chronological order of the time the original plays were written.