Webborn and Finn’s cracking new musical The Clockmaker’s Daughter receives a delectable cast recording treatment that features the likes of Ramin Karimloo, Hannah Waddingham, Christine Allado and Fra Fee.
My Top 10 ‘Losing My Mind’ post has been one of the most popular on the site, so I thought I would repeat the exercise with what is arguably Company’s most iconic song ‘Being Alive’.
It’s the hottest day of the year when this podcast is recorded – and we’ve got a leading man to match! Actor Alistair Brammer joins host and director Andrew Keates for this episode of the Show People Podcast, after playing Chris in both the Broadway and West End productions of Miss Saigon.
To pick someone out of this prodigiously talented ensemble almost feels unfair, but Ellams’ narrative did repeatedly land on Peckham and the contested ownership of that salon was given blistering power by Akinade’s Samuel, bristling under the control of pseudo-father figure Emmanuel.
I always find it fascinating to watch how the critical community deals with a play that becomes a big success. The overnight rush to acclaim genius, the enthusiasm with which some greet it, the scepticism that that inspires in others followed by the relief that comes when someone publishes a well-reasoned critique that allows them to say ‘well it isn’t that good, see’.
The play’s the thing though and here, Butterworth has constructed a Northern Irish epic. Set at harvest-time in 1981, deep in County Armagh, the Carney clan are gathering for a humdinger of a do once the work in the field is done.
The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Graeme’s beloved family tale of the riverbank has delighted readers young and old for over a century. The story of Ratty, Mole and the severe Mr Badger and their mission to save the notorious Mr Toad from himself is a timeless classic enjoyed by all.
Kenneth Grahame’s story of Ratty, Mole, Badger and the irrepressible Toad have been a favourite of many for longer than they can remember – I grew up delighting in the stop-motion version and have long been a staple for adaptation on both stage and screen, Grahame’s skilful evocation of a pastoral England that no longer exists (and may never have) is infinitely comforting and inviting.
Samantha Barks and Jonathan Bailey are just the latest in a line of musically exquisite, broken-hearted couples to tackle Jason Robert Brown’s song cycle. Remember Lara Pulver and Damian Humbley in the UK premiere? Here’s a pictorial timeline including them and other transatlantic pairings you may recognise.
Other standout performances were that of Neil McDermott and Sophia Nomvete. McDermott played the Chief Weasel, a cunning and cruel Wild Wooder.
The Wind in the Willows’ charms are gentle, befitting any iteration of the beloved children’s novel by Kenneth Grahame. Julian Fellowes’ adaptation is faithful to that story and though the scale of Rachel Kavanaugh’s production is suitably large, it is also refreshingly simple.
The full cast for the new musical of The Wind in the Willows has been announced. They join leads Rufus Hound as the lovable menace Mr Toad, David Birrell as Badger, Fra Fee as Mole, Thomas Howes as Ratty, Neil McDermott as Chief Weasel and Sophia Nomvete as Mrs Otter.
Taking on the role of Violet Chandler in The Fix has been a challenge for her, but it’s one she’s embraced and it’s led her to a nomination for an Offie award. I caught up with Lucy while she was metamorphosing into the musical’s determined widow!
In a plot which is The West Wing: The Musical before the interval, and The Sopranos after, his Jackie Kennedy-esque widow (scenery chewing fun and tiptop vocals from Lucy Williamson) shifts her manipulative sights to her son, Fra Fee.
The show, however, is driven by the astonishing performances of Lucy Williamson as Violet and Ken Christiansen’s Grahame. Williamson’s performance is a powerhouse.
I was already familiar with the original soundtrack to this controversial yet exceptionally current piece of musical theatre; I have also watched clips of other performers playing the main roles. However, in three years of theatre blogging, I have never seen a performance that matches the magic of Lucy Williamson’s genius portrayal of Violet Chandler.
A perfect, no-frills performance space for a political musical statement awaits us. The Fix is a story of a senator who dies “on the job” with a prostitute.
There are times when theatre can seem almost too prescient, where a show can offer a glimpse into a possible future that seems a little too real. There are moments in Michael Strassen’s production of The Fix that make you wonder just how much we are manipulated by the public view of politicians, and just how much they are all hiding.
Casting has been announced – including Rufus Hound, Fra Fee, Neil McDermott and Thomas Howes – for the new musical adapttion of THE WIND IN THE WILLOWS ahead of its world premiere at Theatre Royal in Plymouth from 8th October 2016 followed by dates at The Lowry in Salford and the Mayflower Theatre in Southampton prior to opening in London’s West End.