The Glass Menagerie, Arcola Theatre

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By Laura Kressly

In 1930s St Louis, Missouri, housing laws ensured black people and white people lived in separate neighbourhoods. Racial inequality was rife and the city as a whole, like the rest of the US, was suffering the effects of the Great Depression. The Wingfield family are no different – living in a tenement apartment, Amanda and her grown children, Tom and Laura, struggle to make ends meet. Stress, worry and resentment drives wedges between them, creating a tension stoked by Tennessee William’s exquisite language. In this production directed by Femi Elufowoju Jr, the Wingfields are black, so their dreams and aspirations are all the more devastatingly unreachable when contexualised by the segregation of the day.

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And Tell Sad Stories of the Death of Queens, King’s Head Theatre

by guest critic Greg Forrest

Trans drag queen Candy Delaney (Luke Mullins) is about to turn thirty-five, with three properties in New Orleans, a successful interior decorating business, and a leak in her heart. Looking to leave this little empire to someone, Candy picks up a “straight” sailor in a gay bar (George Fletcher), and makes a tentative offer.

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