We asked our reviewers to take a look at 2016 and to nominate some stand out productions for 2016.
Julian Eaves replied with the following:-
The stand-out moments of 2016 for me are all new works, or at least new to the UK.
‘Can’t Stop It’, is a trans-Atlantic collaboration between two new British book writers, Adam Button and Lemon Otter; Lemon has also done the ingenious musical arrangements of the songs, which are by US indie group, Suburban Legends – most of the numbers come from their back catalogue, but some have been composed especially for the show. In the hands of dramaturg-director Max Reynolds, this show is taking very promising shape. Following two sets of workshops – at Canterbury and at the Performance Preparation Academy, Guildford – the team is currently exploring different options to develop the show further. Read Julian’s original article.
‘Adding Machine’, the US composer Joshua Schmidt’s 2008 quasi-opera to a libretto of his own devising (in collaboration with Jason Loewith), based on the 1923 expressionist drama by Elmer Rice, made a huge impact at its sold-out UK premiere run at the tiny Finborough Theatre. A haunting, brilliant, demanding score, ranging in style from Berg to Buddy da Silva, the top-notch cast delivered a splendid performance in a masterfully designed space, complete with concealed neon signs and ornamental pond. Read Julian’s review of Adding Machine.
‘Hotel for Criminals’ is the 1974 musicalization by Stanley Silverman of a script by Richard Foreman derived from early surrealist French cinema (‘Fantomas’ and ‘Judex’). Silverman has been compared – by the New York Times – favourably with Bernstein: and yet it is only thanks to the single-handed determination of one man, Patrick Kennedy, that his works are being staged in this country at all. This year, he took over the New Wimbledon Studio for a single week to present a stunningly designed, directed, lit and choreographed production (he does it all), which he also narrated. Read Julian’s review of Hotel For Criminals.
What do you think of Julian’s choices? Let us know your thoughts if you saw any of the listed productions.