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‘A spooktacular treat’: THE CANTERVILLE GHOST – Southwark Playhouse ★★★★★

In London theatre, Opinion, Other Recent Articles, Plays, Regional theatre, Reviews, Touring by Debbie GilpinLeave a Comment

Fear and laughter often go hand-in-hand (you only have to look at work from the likes of Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith to see that), so Tall Stories’ approach to the Oscar Wilde novella The Canterville Ghost is not as bizarre as it may first seem. Their vaudeville stage adaptation is currently playing at Southwark Playhouse, before heading to Bristol and Newcastle.

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‘A fantastic double act’: SHERLOCK HOLMES: THE VALLEY OF FEAR – Greenwich Theatre & Touring ★★★★

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The game is afoot once more, as Blackeyed Theatre hase adapted the Sherlock Holmes story The Valley of Fear into a brand new stage show. This production is currently touring the country, and follows on from the events of The Sign of Four – with Luke Barton and Joseph Derrington reprising the roles of Holmes and Watson for this latest mystery.

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‘Gabriel Byrne is a magnetic presence’: WALKING WITH GHOSTS – Apollo Theatre ★★★★★

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Following in the footsteps of the likes of David Suchet and Ian McKellen, celebrated Irish actor Gabriel Byrne brings his memoir, Walking With Ghosts, to the stage. This brief West End run comes off the back of an engagement at Dublin’s Gaiety Theatre earlier this year, and a stint on Broadway will follow next month.

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‘It’s clear that this play is having an effect already’: I, JOAN – Shakespeare’s Globe ★★★★

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Charlie Josephine’s play I, Joan at Shakespeare’s Globe does give Joan a feminist mantle; that is probably for the best, as the character would be pretty unbearable if focused solely on their religious and nationalist quest – it also speaks more to a modern audience, and makes more sense in the context of other creative choices in this play.

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‘A well overdue production of an elusive play’: HENRY VIII – Shakespeare’s Globe ★★★★

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Written in collaboration with John Fletcher, Henry VIII is quite possibly Shakespeare’s final play – but, despite this country’s continued obsession with all things Tudor, it remains a rarely performed piece. Imagine the delight of Shakespeare completists everywhere when it was announced as part of the Globe’s 2022 summer season, this time in a slightly updated version that sees Hannah Khalil (resident writer) become the third collaborator; the original has a heavy male focus, thanks in part to the two (male) playwrights having to work around the expectations of the establishment to avoid censorship and arrest – but now 400 years have passed, it’s about time the female voices in this story were heard as well.

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‘Absolutely worth investing your time in’: HENRY VI: WARS OF THE ROSES – Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford upon Avon ★★★★

In Opinion, Other Recent Articles, Plays, Regional theatre, Reviews by Debbie GilpinLeave a Comment

Running in rep alongside Henry VI: Rebellion (a.k.a. Henry VI, part two), the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Royal Shakespeare Theatre is also currently home to Henry VI, part three. As with the previous part, this third play in Shakespeare’s first Henriad has been renamed – going under the title Henry VI: Wars of the Roses.

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‘An important show deservedly being shared with a wider audience’: RIOT ACT – Stream Theatre (Online review) ★★★★

In Online shows, Opinion, Other Recent Articles, Plays, Reviews by Debbie GilpinLeave a Comment

This is a piece of verbatim theatre, telling three stories of queer activism from the mid-20th century to the present day; Alexis Gregory conducted interviews with Michael-Anthony Nozzi (a survivor of the Stonewall riots), Lavinia Co-op (a 70s drag artist), and Paul Burston (a 90s AIDS activist).