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‘A fast-paced romp through one of Shakespeare’s daftest comedies’: THE COMEDY OF ERRORS – Wimbledon & Touring

In Children's theatre, Comedy, London theatre, Opinion, Other Recent Articles, Plays, Regional theatre, Reviews, Touring by The Family StageLeave a Comment

Scoot Theatre is out touring cricket grounds (plus a few other places) again this summer with two condensed, family-friendly Shakespeare shows. Alongside the return of A Midsummer Night’s Dream (which we saw and loved at BarnFest 2020) comes The Comedy of Errors.

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‘It’s hard to pick holes in this production’: The Wolves of Willoughby Chase – Greenwich Theatre

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This was our second trip to Greenwich Theatre in a week as we returned to watch The Wolves of Willoughby Chase. The production was originally scheduled to run last Christmas but was unfortunately halted by Covid restrictions. After another Covid-enforced delay, it’s finally up and running alongside Pinocchio as part of the theatre’s inaugural in-house rep season of family theatre.

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‘A courtroom setting gets round socially distanced difficulties’: THE WIND IN THE WILLOWS – Guildford Shakespeare Company (Online review)

In Children's theatre, London theatre, Musicals, Opinion, Plays, Regional theatre, Reviews, Touring by The Family StageLeave a Comment

Guildford Shakespeare Company first performed their adaptation of Kenneth Grahame’s classic in 2015. After a successful series of Zoom murder mystery evenings, they decided to recreate their hit family production.

GOODNIGHT MISTER TOM – West End

In Children's theatre, London theatre, Plays, Reviews by Laura KresslyLeave a Comment

The WWII image of dejected, scrappy children with brown tags around their necks, clutching their most precious belongings as they are re-homed with strangers in the countryside is a powerful one. It’s one that inspired author Michelle Magorian to write Goodnight Mister Tom, adapted by David Wood for the stage, now in London after a successful run at Chichester and before heading off for a national tour. The audience meets little William, who is sent from Deptford to Dorset and assigned to live with the reclusive Tom Oakley. With a focus on Tom more so than the relocated children, this is a story about finding love again after a devastating loss. This part of the production is moving, but the story is slow to develop over a long time period and the flimsy, thin dialogue doesn’t support the large cast of characters, their development and the devastation of wartime.

BEAUTY & THE BEAST – Polka Theatre

In Children's theatre, Comedy, London theatre, Opinion, Plays, Reviews by Laura KresslyLeave a Comment

Cold, dark days make me want to see feel-good theatre, especially in the run up to the holidays. Bonus points if it’s colourful, has some depth and at least some non-formulaic elements, even in a classic story. Polka Theatre’s Beauty & the Beast for ages 6-12 meets these criteria with a surprisingly complex storyline that keeps adult attention as well as kids’. Despite the target age range, there is some great humour and a touch of innuendo adults will appreciate (kids definitely won’t get it), sumptuous set and lighting and an adapted, relevant script. Some of the performances are wooden from the dated language and there are some dodgy movement-based transitions, but the school group audience was quiet and focused for most of the nearly two hours with interval.