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DOLPHINS AND SHARKS by James Anthony Tyler

Finborough Theatre 12 – 30 September 2017

****

James Anthony Tyler’s enjoyable comedy, first shown as part of Finborough’s Vibrant Festival of new writing (2016), neatly brings new arguments to the racism debate.

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9 TO 5 THE MUSICAL by Patricia Resnick & Dolly Parton

Upstairs at the Gatehouse, Highgate 30 Aug – 1 Oct 2017

****

‘Joyful and life-affirming’

The 1980’s comedy classic “9 To 5” was a pivotal film  ...

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THE SWORD AND THE DOPE by Michael Head

Waterloo East Theatre 5 September - 1st of October 2017

****

‘you’ll feel like you’ve been portkeyed into a world of Vikings and Lords’  

Back for its fourth run, this time at the Waterloo East theatre, Michael Head and his gang of actors aimed to live up to their past praise and boy did they do just that. Read More  

 

DANTE’S DIVINE COMEDY

Baron’s Court Theatre 5 - 30 September 2017

*****

Dante’s narrative poem was completed in 1320, one year before his death. Telling the story of the soul’s journey towards God, Dante was very much a man of his time. So It Goes Theatre have taken this late Medieval epic and given it contemporary focus. Read More

 

THE PROVOKED WIFE by John Vanbrugh

The Hope Theatre, 5 to 23 Sept 2017

*****

It takes something special to make a 320-year-old play feel fresh, funny, and entirely up-to-date, and Marooned Theatre do exactly that with their new take on Vanbrugh’s The Provoked Wife. Read More

 

TALK RADIO by Eric Bogosian

Old Red Lion Theatre 29 August – 23 September 2017

*****

Thirty years ago, when Eric Bogosian penned the play, talk radio was at its height. With loners, drunks, and insomniacs included amongst their callers, they were not, the most level-headed bunch. Read More

 

AGENT OF INFLUENCE: THE SECRET LIFE OF PAMELA MORE by Sarah Sigal

Drayton Arms Theatre 5 -23 September 2017

****

‘Passionate and unapologetic'

A beautiful, charismatic, fashion columnist and socialite, Mrs Pamela More is recruited by MI5 in London 1936.  Read More

 

THE STATE OF THINGS by Thomas Attwood

Music and Lyrics by Elliot Clay

Brockley Jack Studio Theatre 7 - 23 September 2017

***

‘The musical score is fantastic, the story misses the mark’

Seven teenagers are getting prepared for their music GCSE when they suddenly find out the A’level music course is being cut.  This is particularly relevant at the moment ... Read more

 

BREATHING CORPSES by Laura Wade

The Hen & Chickens Theatre 18 – 23 September 2017

***

‘a promising cast for Laura Wade’s seminal play’  

This is required viewing for any theatre buffs who haven’t seen a Laura Wade play yet.  BREATHING CORPSES was nominated for an Olivier Award as well as a bunch of other awards.  Premiered at The Royal Court Theatre in 2005 ... Read More 

 

Archive Five-Star reviewed shows:

 

ADAM AND EVE by Tim Cook

Jack Studio theatre until 2nd September

*****

‘the slow disintegration of a relationship…with enough edge to keep it feeling fresh’  

The dysfunctional teacher pupil relationship has proved to be a rich seam for playwrights to mine (Phoebe Éclair Powell’s Wink, Matt Parvin’s Jam and Brad Birch’s The Brink) and playwright Tim Cook adds a new dimension ... Read More

 

THE GAME’S AFOOT by Tom Taylor (Touring nationally)

Reviewed at Upstairs at The Western, Leicester 1 September 2017

*****

‘the laughs come thick and fast’

Tom Taylor is a very funny multi award winning comedian whose usual genre is silly musical comedy. This year he has branched out into what can only be described as spoof detective stories and ... Read More

 

FILTH based on the novels by Irvine Welsh adapted by Harry Gibson

Etcetera Theatre, 18 – 20 August 2017

Part of Camden Fringe

*****

'A stonking filthy Glasgow Kiss'  

As the show kicks off, it becomes clear that the filth of the title role is an officer of the law who has chosen his job for the sole satisfaction of abusing the power it gives him. Read More

 

MIMES (Most Imbecilic Mime Ensemble Show)

The Three Dots Company

Etcetera Theatre 16 – 20 August 2017

Part of Camden Fringe

*****

'Their expressive faces reveal so much more than words could say, in this exquisite mime show'

In this family show the mimes use traditional Commedia dell’arte techniques as well as clowning and ... Read More

 

BROKEN by Matthew Lyon

The Etcetera, Camden  14th – 17th August

*****

‘soaring musicality and delicious smuttiness’

Broken is one of those rare things where you feel as though you are watching a classic in the making. Set in Shepherds Bush it focuses on the ... Read More

 

SAM AND TOM: UNRECTIFIABLE (Edinburgh Preview)

By Tom Burgess & Sam Nicoresti

Etcetera Theatre, Camden 22nd July

*****

‘a depth of oddity that’s utterly unique’

A sweet and awkward pair, the boys hit the ground running with intense energy and silliness. They quickly established a relationship with the audience, striking ... Read More

 

TAMING OF THE SHREW

Jack Studio Theatre 18 July – 5 August 2017

Presented by Lazarus Theatre Company

*****

‘If Kneehigh did fringe theatre, this would be it.’

The play is relocated from 16th century Padua to the midst of a muddy festival field in 2017. Here, men and women engage in an epic battle of the sexes to a modern upbeat soundtrack, donned with face glitter and wellies.

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4.48 PSYCHOSIS by Sarah Kane

Angel Theatre Company

Barons Court Theatre, 4-8 July 2017

*****

‘Magnificent seven actors bring poetic beauty to a deeply challenging subject’

You know if you are going to a Sarah Kane play it’s going to be a challenging night. So, it was with some trepidation that I went to see 4.48 Psychosis, the last play Kane wrote before taking her life in 1999 aged just 28. Read More

 

DYL by Mark Weinman

Directed by Clive Judd

Old Red Lion Theatre, 9 May to 3 June.

*****  

James has exiled himself to Aberdeen. He works two weeks on an oil rig. Then he sits for two weeks on the sofa in his rented flat and his dressing gown, staring into space.

James (Scott Arthur) has no friends, but he has a flatmate, and that flatmate, Ryan (Laurie Jamieson), is the friendly, garrulous, foot-in-the-mouth kind of guy who isn’t going to let James waste away his life this way.  Read More

 

LIVING A LITTLE by Finlay Bain

The Kings Head Theatre 6th May – 14th May

Presented by Riot House Theatre with In Your Face Theatre

*****

‘Full of crudeness, charm, and heart’

It’s happened: the zombie apocalypse. The world is in tatters, society has dissolved, chaos reigns. But holed up in a small flat with all the pre-apocalypse luxuries one could hope for, Paul and Rob are living life as normally as they can. But when their sanctuary is invaded by the katana-wielding Penelope, their carefully constructed way of life is challenged and irrevocably changed. Read More

 

THE MAGIC FLUTE

The Kings Head Theatre 3rd May – 4th June

Presented by The Charles Court Opera

*****

‘will delight opera veterans and convert new comers alike’

Mozart’s ‘The Magic Flute’ is one of the best known and well-loved operas there is. An intimidating project to say the least. The Charles Court Opera present their interpretation of this famous show setting it in the heart of the South American jungle. The story follows intrepid explorer Tamino as he embarks on a journey filled with fantastical, magical creatures, where nothing is as it appears to be.  Read More

 

BRIMSTONE AND TREACLE by Dennis Potter

The Hope Theatre 2 – 20 May 2017

*****

‘an immeasurably good play’

Where would you find the devil? Is it Mr Bates hiding behind the National Front? Or even more disturbingly behind a cup of tea and the Sunday Times? Or, Martin, the ‘kindly’ stranger inveigling his way into the household. In Dennis Potter’s 1970s play, banned by BBC radio and not aired until 11 years later, we are faced with this dilemma. Read More

 

CASTE by TW Robertson

Finborough Theatre

2 - 18 April 2017

*****

“Kind Hearts and Coronets”

The Finborough Theatre has done it again. They have re-discovered (and dare I say it re-imagined) this wonderful play ‘Caste’ by TW Robertson. They have, without a doubt, ‘a hit. A palpable hit’, on their hands.  Read More

 

Arthur Miller’s INCIDENT AT VICHY  

Finborough Theatre until 22 April 2017

Presented by Anita Creed Productions for The Phil Willmott Company

*****

Pitch-perfect production

Rather like the Finborough itself, ‘Incident At Vichy’ is small but perfectly formed and never less than ambitious. One of Arthur Miller’s lesser known plays, it centres around the capture and questioning of a group of men during the Second World War.

It’s late enough in the war ... Read More

 

MY LAND’S SHORE

Music and Lyrics by Christopher J Orton

Book and Lyrics by Robert Gould

Presented by All Star Productions

Ye Olde Rose and Crown Theatre 7 – 26 February

*****

Deserves a transfer to the West End

Director Brendan Matthew recalls in his programme notes that My Land’s Shore was described during its workshop stage as ‘The Welsh Les Mis.’ And that’s exactly what it is.

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Cole Porter's ANYTHING GOES

Presented by Ovation

Gatehouse Theatre until 29th January 2017

*****

'Delightful cast in a well-presented production'

The action takes place on a transatlantic crossing from New York to Southampton in 1934. This charming production is faithful to the period and might have been exactly as Cole Porter would have wanted to see it. Read More

 

 

 

 

 

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