For every introverted socially awkward nerd Romantics Anonymous feels like seeing your fears and secrets on stage without being mocked.
And so here it is… my top 10 musicals of the decade. It turned out to be a slightly emotional journey. But it turns out musicals meant a lot in that time and I’ll fight anyone who says musicals aren’t a serious artform.
This isn’t a ‘best of’ list it’s my best-of list, these are the plays that shaped me this decade and will stay with me well into the next.
Directors Marianne Elliott and Miranda Cromwell have brought their unique vision to one of the greatest plays of the 20th century by Arthur Miller, seen through the eyes of an African American family. So what did the Mates think of this Young Vic production of the American drama classic?
As part of a new series, our editor Lisa Martland picks out seven of her Top Picks from the last week of theatre (29 April-6 May 2019). Amidst her choices are two more West End productions of classic American drama: Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman at the Young Vic (Emily Garside) and Tennessee Williams’ Orpheus Descending at the Menier Chocolate Factory (Libby Purves).
For anyone who has been under a rock for the last couple of years in London theatre, this stripping back to the essence of a classic is one of Marianne Elliott’s (many) talents. And here with Death of a Salesman, with co-director Miranda Cromwell, the play is written again from the ground up. Without changing a word.
It is not to diminish the historical elements, the research and indeed the politics of the play, to say that its power and its joy is in storytelling.
I thank all the theatre I’ve endured that has perhaps made me a better person, but in future I’ll be asking first just how much joy it’s going to bring me, and if I’m perhaps better off elsewhere.
It’s fair to say that the immediate future is looking pretty sweet for the Broadway transfer of Sara Bareilles’ Tony-nominated musical Waitress with more tickets released and the show extending its booking period to 19 October 2019 at the Adelphi Theatre. But how did the Mates rate the show: did they want more pie?
On the top layer, Waitress is sweet and fun with beautiful ingredients in the form of a stellar cast. But dig a little deeper and we find there are a lot more layers to the pie.
I could have written a rave review of Come from Away. But what I couldn’t get out of my head was how important a piece it feels in terms of recording history. As a former history teacher, and as an academic who looks at theatre’s response to real-world events… I wrote an essay instead.
Fascinating All About Eve is, engaging perhaps not always. But anyone hoping for the same level of emotional payoff that Anderson’s other stage roles have demonstrated will likely end up frustrated with Eve.
I’ve spent this last couple of weeks thinking about Rent a lot. It’s not unusual to think about Rent. For me it’s always kind of there, in the background.
I wanted to record all the productions in 2018 that had had a profound impact on me, so here is the collection that will be with me for a long time.
Emily Garside rounds up her Top 10 shows of 2018.
The Other Room has established itself as the Channel 4 of Christmas in Cardiff, with its alternative Christmas show. And this year, up and coming company Big Loop is resident with Cheer.
Directed with intelligence, and a clear passion from Matthew Holmquist and with writing that balances a particular brand of Cardiff humour with universal themes and important questions, Cardiff Boy is an engaging yet emotional piece of work that is beautifully created and performed.
Tuck takes us on a journey of sequins and glitter that eventually blur through tears. It’s fierce and fabulous and goes out fighting.
The moment Company opened younger audiences who had never seen it before similarly lamented that it could ever have been done with a man. ‘But it’s a woman’s story’. And for 2018 it is. It could only be.
If Isley Lynn’s Skin A Cat teaches us anything it’s to be bold in talking about everything about sex, especially for women.