Wednesday, 18 December 2013

From Morning To Midnight - The National Theatre

The first half lures you into a false sense of security about the tone of the piece. The laughs are many and the story intrigues you. A bank clerk steals a large sum of money in the hopes of running off with a beautiful customer. But when his advances are rejected, there is decidedly less, if anything at all to laugh at in the second half and the plays descends into the dark journey of the clerk trying to find the value of money in brothels and gambling on bike races. Until his redemption comes at the end of the play
Great set and some fantastic movement on stage but a somewhat confusing and slightly boring piece.

FromMorning to Midnight can be seen @ The National Theatre until 26th January

Friday, 6 December 2013

In The Next Room - St James Theatre

I was a little bit anxious as this play is dubbed ‘the vibrator play.’ But happy to report that there’s nothing rude or vulgar about it. Although brace yourself for an unexpected ‘revelation’ in the last 2 minutes of the show.
 Dr Givings (Jason Hughes) has nothing but the utmost respect for his patients and cares deeply for their well being; until he sees his wife’s hand on one of their cheeks… He uses his new electrical creation as a treatment for hysteria. It’s ironic though that he can’t see his own wife’s frustrations and unhappiness, caused greatly by her inability to sufficiently breast feed her baby.
NatalieCasey does a wonderful job of portraying an incredibly tactless (but sweet and funny) Mrs Givings. She’s genuinely curious as to what’s going on behind the closed doors of her husband’s operating theatre and goes to great lengths to find out.
Brilliant supporting roles by Edward Bennett as the hilarious male artist whose hysteria has affected his sight and thus ability to paint and a more somber, moving performance by Madeline Appiah as the wet nurse grieving the loss of her baby.

InThe Next Room can be seen at St James Theatre until 4th Jan 

Monday, 25 November 2013

nut - The Shed

This was my first visit to The Shed. Loved the intimate 225 seat space, didn’t love the show.  The opening scene is intriguing. Elayne (Nadine Marshall), a woman obsessed with list making and post it notes, discusses eulogies and what their funerals will be like with her friend, in a less than friendly manner. The banter is witty and brings a few smiles. It then switches to a feud between a separated husband and wife about his one day a week access to their daughter. By the last scene we see the connection but to me there was something greatly lacking in brining it all together; giving it purpose. My other disappointment with the first piece of work I've seen by debbie tucker green was the unnecessary overuse of profanity which, in my opinion, brought nothing to the characters or the piece.

nut can be seen @ The Shed, The National Theatreuntil 5th Dec

Thursday, 19 September 2013

A Doll’s House - Duke of York's

As an amateur theatre producer, it’s encouraging to see that even the professional sometimes have technical difficulties. The show started 6 minutes late, then paused less than a minute in as there was a stage rotation malfunction. House lights came up and stage crew made an apology assuring us it would be sorted soon. Ten minutes later the show started again, only to be stopped in the same place when the sage again refused to rotate. Another apology, another wait and then, 30 minutes later than billed the show began and thankfully, the dodgy start was my only critique of this production.
The joyful opening scenes of an adoring mother hiding her children’s Christmas gifts and sneakily eating chocolates, masks the darker realities of the situation about to unfold. The childlike Nora (Hattie Morahan) had borrowed some money years ago when her husband was unwell and is now being blackmailed. An unexpected visit from Nora’s childhood friend, Kristine (Caroline Martin) lightens the state for a while but eventually husband Torvald (Dominic Rowan) learns the truth. And it’s revealed sensationally by a Nora who has matured considerably from the childish woman we met in Act One.

A Doll’s House can be seen @ Duke OfYork’s until 26th October 

Friday, 23 August 2013

Indian Tempest - Shakespeare's Globe

This production was my least favourite of all I’ve seen at Shakespeare Globe, and for the first time in my history of theatre visits, I left during the intermission. Up on to that that point I can say the Indian Tempest is energetic, the acting over the top but difficult to follow. Not due to its array of languages, as most of the dialog was in English, but rather it's pieced together chaotically. Still it’s safe to say it was the most buoyant interpretation of the I’ve seen. Little touches like the water soaked sponge clouds, which sprayed the audience as it dangled did make me smile – and was probably a nice refresher on an immensely sunny afternoon at the Globe.