Iris Theatre’s adaptation of Victor Hugo’s classic novel is certainly an ambitious and refreshing take on the story – but can’t always make up its mind whether it wants to be taken seriously or not.
Love London Love Culture rounds up the reviews for Mr Gum & the Dancing Bear, Andy Stanton and Jim Fortune’s musical based on the children’s books. It continues in rep at the National Theatre until 31 August 2019.
Sally Cookson’s National Theatre and Bristol Old Vic production of JM Barrie’s classic story Peter Pan officially opens the Troubadour White City Theatre, where it’s booking until 27 October 2019. Love London Love Culture rounds up the reviews.
This intimate, personal production from Theatre Ad Infinitum is an accurate and emotionally charged snapshot of the pervasive conflict between capitalism and the desire for a family.
Can you sum up the show in five words? ‘Swashbuckling action-packed piratey fun!’
Avoiding the stereotypes of circus nostalgia, the show nonetheless manages to use the tropes of classical circus in a way that feels fresh and resonant to contemporary youngsters.
Rape culture is real. Victims are blamed, perpetrators are excused and conviction rates are low. Of reported rapes – estimated to be less than 20% – only 3% are deemed to be false accusations.
Alex Gwyther’s Eyes Closed, Ears Covered is a slippery play that continuously raises questions. We’re immediately presented with Alyson Cummins’ concrete-grey, angular set, suggestive of a brutalist play park in a rundown housing estate.
A middle-aged, gay Welshman contemplates the English class he teaches in Hong Kong. Amongst the students is Windy, the Chinese woman with whom he shares his bed.
In the same rehearsal venue as us are the kids of School Of Rock – a show that is high on my list to see. Every morning at 10 and every evening at 6 you see the real heroes, no not the kids but the parents waiting for their loved ones.
What happens when two experimental performance artists join forces with a few kids to make a kids’ show? Utterly delightful, if messy, madness. 1990s Nickelodeon is a clear influence, as are fart jokes, poo, time bending and parallel universes.
Originally a novel by Emma Donoghue that swept up the award nominations last year after being made into a film, Room is now a play. Adapted by the writer for the stage, it stays true to the original story of a young woman abducted at 19 and imprisoned as a sex slave.
Rhoda is the picture-perfect 1950s American child. Obedient, clever and helpful, she is a dream for any parent. But after the death of a classmate who won the penmanship medal Rhoda coveted, mum Christine’s investigations into past “accident” uncover a dark secret from her own childhood that means Rhoda isn’t all that seems.
In 2012, The RSC drew ire for its Orphan of Zhao casting in which there were a whole three East Asian actors. Though the production went ahead, RSC artistic director Greg Doran showed willing to listen and bring about change.
How do you stage appalling real-life events? I mean, without either being too luridly voyeuristic or too matter-of-factly journalistic? Maybe an oblique approach is the answer.
The Underbelly’s Circus Hub on the Meadows in Edinburgh’s Fringe seems to be the perfect venue for a children’s show. Bright colours surround the two venues (one big top, one Spiegeltent this year), large colourful shapes like giant Lego blocks fill the pasture area, and multi-coloured palettes make up the bar furniture. The whole place feels like a giant kid’s playground.
What happened to King Lear’s wife? The woman who birthed the three daughters that he loves so dearly is never mentioned in his title play. Back in the ’80s, the Women’s Theatre Group and Elaine Feinstein created Lear’s Daughters, a flawed, feminist play attempting to reason why Goneril and Regan do what they do by depicting the girls’ upbringing.
Whilst there’s plenty of Shakespeare at the fringe, it doesn’t get much coverage. It’s understandable – the Bard doesn’t count as a potential Next Big Thing, and he’s favoured by student and international groups that usually have short runs and are deemed less worthy of critical attention.
The Next Step is a Canadian reality-style TV show that follows a group of young dancers and in the UK, this popular tween drama is broadcast on CBBC. In this explosive collaboration,The Next Step has teamed up with new CBBC show Lost and Found Music Studios and the result is The Next Step: Wild Rhythm Tour.
Since Big Fish Little Fish launched in Manchester in November 2015, their family raves have proven to be the hottest ticket in town. Always a sell-out gig, with tickets selling out for the Manchester January event in 15 minutes – once you’ve been you will know why.