World premieres in Chichester Festival Theatre’s Festival 2020 include first plays by Steven Moffat and Kate Mosse and new work by Suhayla El-Bushra and Christopher Shinn.
We round up the reviews for the world premiere production of A Very Expensive Poison, Lucy Prebble’s reimagining of Luke Harding’s exposé of the events behind the notorious death of ex-FSB Officer Alexander Litvinenko.
Lucy Prebble’s latest tells the story of the murder of Alexander Litvinenko in A Very Expensive Poison, but prefers buffoonery over analysis.
In A Very Expensive Poison Lucy Prebble has serious arguments to outlay about the relationship between international governments and narrative misdirection, but the broadly comic approach to presentation feels at odds with the meaning of the play.
Marina Litvinenko’s final address in A Very Expensive Poison, reminding us of our political cowardice and idly greedy tolerance of crooked Russian money in our capital city, will bring theatres to their feet in admiration for her and shame at our shabbiness. It needed telling.
After years of individual successes Mark Gatiss, Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton (sometimes with the writer Jeremy Dyson) are back in League of Gentleman Live Again: every character is greeted by whoops of joyful recognition.
This week, the London theatre bloggers discuss the West End transfer of flash-bang-wallop musical Half a Sixpence, the revival of Ronald Harwood’s The Dresser starring Ken Stott and Reece Shearsmith, and the recent UK premiere of One Night in Miami.
we’re looking backwards and forwards for our final list today. These are our current Top 15 Ticket Recommendations – broken down into five musicals, five plays and five ‘star attractions’ (in other words, there are famous faces in the cast) – based on both best-sellers over the past month as well as our predictions on the hottest of upcoming openings…
Ken Stott and Reece Shearsmith star in Ronald Harwood’s play about two men reluctantly co-dependent. After touring, the production officially opened last week at the West End’s Duke of York’s Theatre, where it’s booking until 14 January 2016. What have critics been saying about it?
Any opinion I might have had about Ronald Harwood’s The Dresser inevitably comes tainted with his apparent inability to open his mouth without spouting some kind of crap or other.
Great work from Ken Stott and Reece Shearsmith saves a nostalgic drama from wallowing in its own Britishness.
Witty and heartfelt, Ken Stott and Reece Shearsmith’s evocation of this classic play about theatre life is moving and impressive. The house darkens, the curtain lifts and bombs shake plaster from the ceiling. We are in the middle of a ‘tatty tour of the provinces’, marooned in the dressing room of a theatre battered by German shelling in the 1940s.
There’s a timeless nostalgia to Ronald Harwood’s The Dresser that captures a particular snapshot of England during the Second World War. With the country’s fit young men called up to fight, it’s left to the “cripples, old men and Nancy boys” to tread the boards.
But under Sean Foley’s direction, and with a particularly fine and sensitive cast, this time the play speaks clearly of wider human truths as well as sparking and stabbling with irresistible wit (Foley admits surprise on re-reading it at how much he laughed). Reece Shearsmith is perfection as Norman the dresser.
We’re confirmed fans of Chichester Festival Theatre here, and for us their announcement of a new season is a bit like Christmas! The Winter 2016 season has a great range of entertainment and there’s sure to be something for everyone’s tastes! Edward Fox, Liza Goddard, Amanda Holden, Felicity Kendal, Robert Powell, Reece Shearsmith, Ken Stott and Imogen Stubbs are among the stars appearing in plays by writers from Alan Ayckbourn to Ronald Harwood, alongside contemporary work from Frantic Assembly and Spymonkey
The first images of Ken Stott and Reece Shearsmith in a new production of Ronald Harwood’s The Dresser were released today, along with two new cast members: Selina Cadell and Harriet Thorpe. The Dresser, directed by Sean Foley, will play at the West End’s Duke of York’s Theatre from 5 October 2016 to 14 January 2017
Director Sean Foley who has recently enjoyed sell-out success adapting and directing The Painkiller, with Kenneth Branagh and Rob Brydon in the Branagh Theatre Company season of Plays at the Garrick will, starting this autumn, under producer Mark Goucher, direct two new star-studded productions in the West End: Ronald Harwood’s The Dresser with Ken Stott and Reece Shearsmith, and The Miser with Griff Rhys Jones.
Let’s get it off our chests now: it will have you ‘in suspense’, it ‘goes with a swing’ there’s plenty of ‘gallows humour’, it’s a plot that ‘leaves you dangling’, jerking with ‘twists and turns’ and ‘a play with legs’ that moves at ‘breakneck’ speed and would be ‘criminal’ if you missed it …
Full casting has today been announced for the West End run of the Royal Court Theatre’s production of Hangmen. Producers Robert Fox, Matthew Byam Shaw for Playful Productions and Royal Court Theatre Productions are delighted to announce that Andy Nyman will play Syd, Craig Parkinson will take on the role of Inspector Fry and Tony Hirst will play Bill, completing the cast of the West End production. Directed by Matthew Dunster, Martin McDonagh’s Hangmen will transfer to the Wyndham’s Theatre for a strictly limited season, previewing from 1 December.
Grotesque. Morbid. Hilarious. Dark, absurd, evocative. Start with the last one. This is a period-conscious piece, even more than Martin McDonagh’s Irish-set works (The Beauty Queen of Leenane, The Cripple of Inishmaan, both recently and brilliantly staged).
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