Is Something Rotten Headed To The West End?

Something Rotten musical

It has been reported in tonight’s London Evening Standard that one of the hottest new musicals on Broadway may be headed to the West End of London sooner than anticipated. Spoofing Shakespeare, Something Rotten is about two brothers who frustrated by a hack called Shakespeare inadvertently write the first musical. Critically acclaimed and nominated for ten Tony Awards it looks set to be an enormous Broadway hit. Something Rotten is directed by Casey Nicolaw who directed The Book Of Mormon and is also responsible for Disney’s Aladdin on Broadway. Producer Kevin McCollum, whose credits include Avenue Q and Rent, said: “The idea of a musical set in Shakespeare’s time and having characters compete with him is something people are responding to. I love bringing shows to London and hope to send the show there.” Something Rotten has been compared to Spamalot and that show’s Monty Python creator Eric Idle reportedly told the Standard: … Read more

REVIEW: Ah, Wilderness!, Young Vic Theatre ✭✭

Ah, Wiulderness by Eugene O'Neill at the Young Vic Theatre London

The combination of sand, water, and romantic moon makes for a touching image towards the end of the play. It is beautifully lit by the talents of Charles Balfour and, for that one moment, it seems as though the shifting, gritty presence of the comatose sand has been worthwhile. Dominic Rowan’s rascally Sid is full blooded and he makes the most of what the part offers. George Mackay is impressive as Richard, vibrant, compelling and suitably obsessive.

Fanny And Stella at Above The Stag

Fanny and Stella at Above The Stage in London

Daring to be different may well be considered acceptable in modern times but spare a thought for Ernest Boulton and Frederick Park, two cross dressers in Victorian England. Showy and theatrical on and off the stage, which they so loved, Fanny and Stella were arrested at The Strand Theatre in 1870. They appeared in court next morning still in their evening gowns, and the trial for homosexual offences of this judge’s son and a bank clerk was the sensation of the age, especially when Boulton’s respectable and accepting mother, Mary Ann, took the stand. Their ultimate acquittal is all the more fascinating when compared to Oscar Wilde’s imprisonment less than 30 years later. Fanny and Stella: The Shocking True Story makes it’s debut at the Above The Stage Theatre, London’s only full time professional LGBT theatre on 13 May running until June 14,2015. This new play with original music has … Read more

Mess Headlines Imaginate Before Touring

Caroline Horton stars in Mess at Imaginate prior to a Uk Tour

Olivier Award nominee, Caroline Horton, will revive her 2012 hit Mess for audiences of children and young people on the main stage of the Traverse Theatre as part of Scotland’s Imaginate Festival before a UK tour. Following its award-winning debut at Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2012 (The Stage Award for Best Ensemble), Mess has toured throughout the UK, visiting theatres, arts centres, schools and colleges, also providing workshops for young people to help open up a conversation on the subject matter. Based on Caroline’s own experiences of anorexia, this funny and poignant play with songs is a three hander about obsession, addiction and letting go. Josephine is putting on a play – Boris and Sistahl help. It’s about anorexia. But don’t let that put you off. Unflinchingly they confront big issues (and extremely tiny ones). Today they will tackle a particularly thin elephant in the room. Obsession, addiction and not … Read more

REVIEW: Everyman, National Theatre ✭✭

Everyman at the National Theatre

Rufus Norris throws everything at the production. The result is garish, adolescent and intolerably dull. Too much show and too little style and substance. As Everyman, Chiwetel Ejiofor strives manfully to break through the tedious bonds of Norris’ psychedelic/hallucinogenic vision. He succeeds occasionally, and there is no doubting his conviction and passion.

Teddy Comes To Southwark Playhouse

Teddy at Southwark Playhouse by Tristan Bernays and Dougal Irvine

Snapdragon Productions and Theatre Bench will present Teddy, a new musical world premiere by Tristan Bernays and music by Dougal Irvine at the Southwark Playhouse in June. The time is 1956. It’s a Saturday night in Elephant and Castle and Teddy and Josie are out for a good time. It’s pissing down, they’re skint and someone wants them dead, but that’s never stopped Ted from having a good time. Desperate times call for Rock ‘n’ Roll. Teddy is a punchy, lyrical ride though the dark and damaged world of 1950s London. Featuring a blistering live performance from Johnny Valentine and The Broken Hearts and an electrifying original score by Dougal Irvine. Expect sex, violence and damn good hair. Tristan Bernays said today “I can’t wait to bring Teddy to Southwark Playhouse – a venue which is at the vanguard of new and exciting theatre and musicals.” Dougal Irvine added, “I’m … Read more

REVIEW: Follies In Concert, Royal Albert Hall ✭✭✭

Follies In Concert at the Royal Albert Hall

In the case of Betty Buckley as Carlotta, the casting was inspired. Her powerful and joyful rendition of I’m Still Here stopped the show. But it was Anita Dobson’s self-deprecating turn as Stella which finally galvanised the entire company into glorious cohesion: her attack in Who’s That Woman was splendid (a gutsy belt matched her tap-dancing prowess) and she and all of the other women acquitted themselves well in bringing Andrew Wright’s clever choreography to life. The younger versions of Sally, Phyllis, Ben and Buddy were spot-on, engaging and sublime. Christine Baranski’s Phyllis was brittle, regal and immaculately stylish.