Shakespeare. Theatre. Press Nights. These are all concepts we are familiar with, but in this unprecedented time of COVID-19 lockdown, for a moment we were unsure how theatre would survive.
In this world turned upside down, emergency legislation has been rushed through to do away with barristers. Now the accused in court have only you.
We need to use this time wisely. As audience members, what do we want to see; as creatives, what can be made. If the expectations don’t match, then audiences won’t be back.
This play, written especially for Zoom by John Knowles, looks at a group of people trying to make a seance work when they can’t hold hands.
A fascinating historical curio, Sasha Regan’s production Peace In Our Time is also a fine piece of speculative drama, imbued with Coward’s gift for eloquence and waspishness.
In a world where – if the virus won’t kill us, Donald Trump will – we really, really need good, well delivered, confident silliness and The Importance of Being Earnest delivers.
What makes Not Quite Jerusalem such a vivid and enjoyable play, is the nuanced and recognisable characters – backed here by exemplary performances from a talented cast.
The Old Red Lion’s put together an interesting triptych of plays that, if you’re short for time, allow you to experience the gamut of human experience.
Verbatim plays can often feel static with a view of just letting the words do the work, but the words really lift off the page in The Special Relationship.
The atmosphere created by the superb cast in Jekyll & Hyde as well as the challenge of the game is enormous fun and the time flew by.
Clearly something in Be More Chill has touched a chord with today’s youth, but catchy songs written by committee to hit the teen feelz doesn’t make up for a weak book and problematic politics.
Based on Simon Callow’s English translation, this version of La Cage aux Folles stays true to the original French text. Callow’s edits and new dialogue has given us a fresh interpretation which is arch and bubbling with hilariously sharp one-liners.
Temi Wilkey has written a brilliant first play, which grabs you even though you’ve probably seen many of the components of The High Table before.
Giving up Marty, written by Karen Bartholomew, looks at the impact on adoption when the birth family comes looking.
Chaplin: Birth of a Tramp is a sensitive and interesting take on Chaplin, looking at the artist behind the art and continues to showcase Arrows and Traps as a innovative company.
Frances Barber gives one of the performances of the year (yes I know it is only February) as Billie Trix in Musik, reuniting with Jonathan Harvey and the Pet Shop Boys.
Although Time and Tide ends on a hopeful note, it is not sickly sweet. The characters’ coming out and coming of age stories are grounded in the joys and disappointments of real life. The ending is just right for the characters.
Alexis Gregory’s script for Sex/Crime takes an uncomfortable glance at our obsession with serial killers, sexual violence and 21st century homosexuality.
In this touring production of Beautiful, following on from lengthy London and Broadway runs, Daisy Wood-Davis plays Carole King from innocent 16 year old with enviable talent to an older and wiser woman.
Presented by company Holy What, playwright Lulu Raczka’s reimagining of Sophocles Greek tragedy Antigone, uses an all-female cast.