Bubble Schmeisis, Battersea Arts Centre

https://files.list.co.uk/images/2016/08/04/nick12-lst213950.jpg

Nick Cassenbaum grew up in London’s Jewish community and experienced all the cultural mores that go with it – Spurs games, dubious summer camps, trips to Israel and discovering his willy isn’t like the other boys’ at school. Like many young people as he got older, he hadn’t quite found his place in the world. Until he went with his grandfather, Papa Alan, to the Canning Town bathhouse.

Continue reading

Around, Jackson’s Lane

https://jacksonslane.rooftop.io/sites/18/2016/11/18165226/Around-promopicture-1600x1120.jpg

By guest critic Rebecca JS Nice

Short and sweet, this half hour lunchtime show feeds feisty and giggly kiddies with a banquet of characters performing a range of tricks. A bearded ring master charms a female acrobat snake out of a trunk, and two musicians run around in monkey and pyjama costumes as their underage audience scream and shout at them. Programmed for the Easter holiday, the work is a strong contender among the ever-growing popularity of children’s theatre in London. Particularly special is Jackson’s Lane support for circus, which enriches their programming and sets a precedent for accommodating circus in small theatres.

Continue reading

Day Two at Buzzcut Festival

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C8UuAQSXcAEF4tC.jpg

Part of the reason I wanted to come to Buzzcut is that I find it hard to write about live art. I don’t dislike it, far from it – I have a broad but uninformed appreciation of it. But my theatrical home is built from Shakespeare, text-based narratives and the great American playwrights. I’m no Megan Vaughan or Rosie Curtis – I see performance art every now and again, but not nearly enough as I should. So the goal is to see a lot of live art, and write about. The range in styles and approaches is vast and the festival draws live artists from around the country, so it’s a great place to experience this form of performance.

Continue reading

Miss Nightingale, The Vaults

https://i2.wp.com/www.gaytimes.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/1st-kiss-Nicholas-Coutu-Langmead-Conor-OKane-in-Miss-Nightingale-Photo-Robert-Workman.jpg

By guest critic Alistair Wilkinson

Fly to the front line. Sing some songs. Win the war. Live happily ever after. Sounds easy, right? That’s the idyllic goal that two queers, an unmarried mother and an unborn child feel in Matthew Bugg’s dreamy production of Miss Nightingale. This gorgeous depiction of 1940’s Britain hits you right in the feels and pulls on all heartstrings. The set provides an intimate cabaret club vibe, decorated with posters stating memorable lines from the wonderful songs that are performed throughout.

Continue reading

The Lock In, VAULT Festival

https://i1.wp.com/www.vaultfestival.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Oran-Doyle-THE-LOCK-IN-OTL-Main-Image-1024x579.jpg

It’s St Patrick’s Day at an Irish pub in London. We’ve been there for awhile, but the night is young. There’s a five-strong band more focused on arguing the facts of Irish history than playing music. This becomes the story – drunken frontman Eamonn (Ian Horgan) attempts to tell us the story of the venerable saint. Numerous diversions, interaction, songs and plenty of banter follows a convoluted path through the power of storytelling, national identity and the veracity of history.

Continue reading

Celebration, Florida, The Albany

https://i1.wp.com/exeuntmagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/Greg-Wohead-The-Ted-Bundy-Project-c-Alex-Brenner-600x399.jpeg

by guest critic Tom Brocklehurst

Shows incorporating technology have become more and more common recently. This experimental show, Celebration, Florida, features two unrehearsed performers wearing headphones. Greg Wohead, the creator of the show gives them instructions, dictates to them what to say and where to stand, and what accent to speak in. Most of the time they are speaking as him – they have to imitate his American accent (badly) and ask us to picture them as him, standing in his hotel room in his pants, thinking up ideas for this show.

Continue reading

Swifties, Theatre N16

 

swifties-c-luke-davies

By guest critic Alistair Wilkinson

The fetishism of absorbing someone else’s life and making it your own is the theme explored in Swifties, particularly how to give your world meaning when everything seems so dismal. The play puts in to question why celebrities exist – is it for people like Nina and Yasmin, whose obsession with their idol Taylor Swift has totally taken control over their own identity?

Continue reading