Red Pitch, Bush Theatre

by Laura Kressly

The centre of the world is somewhere in south London within walking distance of the Camberwell Morley’s. It might be up Walworth Road towards Elephant, or in the direction of the Oval on Camberwell New Road. It could also be between there and Peckham, or somewhere down near King’s College Hospital. With all of these areas at the mercy of predatory property developers and skint local governments who are tearing down council blocks and throwing up ‘affordable’ (spoiler: only affordable to rich people) housing, it’s hard to tell exactly where red pitch is. It’s there though, tucked amidst small, shabby shopfronts and concrete estates. To 16-year-olds Bilal, Joey and Omz, the red-fenced football field is everything.

Continue reading

Fair Play, Bush Theatre

Fair Play - Bush Theatre, London - The Reviews Hub

by Laura Kressly

Sophie has been running competitively since she was nine. Now on the threshold of adulthood, she’s training hard with an unwavering focused on major international competitions she is likely to win. Her life completely revolves around her sport and everything else – school, relationships, hobbies – are so far out on her periphery they often disappear. The arrival of a new girl at her running club, Ann, initially changes little for Sophie until their friendship develops and Ann starts pulling far ahead.

Continue reading

F**K OFF, Bread & Roses Theatre

Man Knocks Out Gang of Thugs in Fight Over Wife

by Laura Kressly

The first pub theatre reopening after 5 months of COVID-19 closure feels like a celebration of survival. Given the governmental neglect of the theatre industry has faced since lockdown started, and the number of job losses this has caused across the industry, a tiny space in Clapham being able to stage its first socially-distanced, indoor production is huge. However, this unassuming new play by Michael Dunbar is more of a tangled character study that, though largely well-performed, consists of under-developed subplots and good intentions that aren’t effectively conveyed.

Continue reading

Stud & If We Got Some More Cocaine I Could Show You How I Love You, VAULT Festival

Image result for if we had some more cocaine, vault festival

by guest critic Gregory Forrest

There are no openly gay male professional footballers currently working in Britain. Of course, there are almost definitely gay male professional footballers currently working in Britain, but the prospect of coming out in a sport well known for its chanting crowds and tabloid-splashing players is a daunting one. Paloma Oakenfold’s new play Stud tackles this issue head on.

Continue reading

The Red Lion, Trafalgar Studios

https://newimages.bwwstatic.com/upload11/1735034/tn-500_theredlion,trafalgarstudios-deanboneandstephentompkinson(courtesyofmarkdouet).jpg

I have no interest in football, or any other sports for that matter. It’s not for lack of trying, what with growing up in a middle America that reveres sporting ability above all else. So I approach plays about football with caution, wary that my prejudices could sway my judgement. Fortunately, the tempestuous story of two ideologically opposed, minor league football men and the young player caught between them has little to do with the actual game and has a compelling, emotional narrative.

Continue reading