by Joanna Trainor
“Colm (Wilkinson) sucks the soul out of you when he sings”. Ramin Karimloo told host Seth Rudetsky on Friday night. Well, there’s also something about Karimloo’s voice that leaves you a bit awe-struck. Opening the show with the song he is perhaps best known for, “Til I Hear You Sing” from Love Never Dies makes everyone in the room holds their breath at the same time.
by Lara Alier
Enter a club, where the dim lights make it hard to know if it’s you dancing, or you’re just touching someone else’s limbs. Behind the bar there’s a tall man, with broad shoulders and strong arms, his black beard defining a perfect jaw. He doesn’t ask because he knows exactly what you need. That cocktail is Chicago.
by Gregory Forrest
A whole day of Pinter. “Christ,” my landlord said, “I couldn’t think of anything worse.”
Jamie Lloyd is embarking on an epic project: to stage every single one of the influential
playwright Harold Pinter’s short plays over a six month period, at the theatre which bears his name. Pinter at the Pinter. Pretty neat huh?
by Amy Toledano
It’s the early 1930’s and, “Julian Marsh is puttin’ on a show!”. Pretty Lady is the latest production from the famous director, and all of the local, out-of-work actors are thrilled to have jobs again. But show business is never easy, and this one in particular is no stranger to the trials and tribulations that come with rehearsing a smash hit.
by guest critic Steven Strauss
On its surface, the title Long Day’s Journey into Night describes the looooong four acts it takes Eugene O’Neill’s play to chronicle the story of one day-into-night in the life of the Tyrone family. Metaphorically, it suggests how the play utilizes this micro-slice of life to depict how this autobiographical family descends from the daylight of sanity to the darkness of madness in a macro sense, and how their projected reality in the sunlight of day masks the true darkness of night lingering underneath.
by guest critic Joanna Trainor
There can’t be anything more theatrical than Eurovision, right? Well actually MAD Trust’s West End Eurovision is back, combining big musicals with everyone’s favourite European (ish) song contest, and it’s as wonderfully stagey as you’d imagine.
by guest critic Susannah Martin
After humble beginnings in a space above a pub, it’s an impressive feat to go on and conquer the West End, and Broadway too, but Mischief Theatre continue to prove why their productions are worthy of playing a variety of theatres across the world. Celebrating their second birthday at the Criterion Theatre, The Comedy About a Bank Robbery is the company’s third West End hit, and it’s easy to see why.
by guest critic Susannah Martin
On Sunday, the West End’s Prince of Wales Theatre saw some of theatre’s biggest stars host and perform in the Mousetrap Theatre Projects’ Anniversary Gala, which nodded
to the 21 years that the charity has provided disadvantaged families and young people with the opportunity to experience live theatre. It’s a cause that is celebrated throughout the industry, and the night’s entertainment proved its importance for not only the recipients, but for the performers who have benefited from the scheme.
by guest critic Kudzanayi Chiwawa
Heads or tails – with the flip of a coin, on this evening, Juliet Stevenson is Elizabeth I and Mary Stuart is portrayed by Lia Williams.
The play opens with urgency, the stakes are high and the rhythm throughout doesn’t let up. It’s exhilarating. Williams commands the stage like a beautiful beast, burdened by captivity. We know how history reads for these two women, but the battle waged on stage, makes you wonder how will it end.
Let’s get this out of the way first – does Hamilton live up to the hype? Yes. It’s very good. Though the revolution in the plot doesn’t influence the dramaturgy, that doesn’t mean it’s not a fantastic show that musically updates the genre and skillfully triggers a spectrum of emotions. It’s simultaneously epic and intimate, staged surprisingly simply with striking, sculptural choreography and utterly engaging throughout.
But this pro-immigration, hip-hop reinvention of the all-American musical about a country gaining independence from a distant, tyrannical overlord resonates rather differently in Brexit Britain than it does in America. Forget the NHS bus – could Hamilton be the new symbol of the Leave campaign?