Julian Eaves take a look at Zoo Nation’s Sylvia which has been showcased as a work in progress at the Old Vic Theatre. Sylvia Old Vic Theatre, 19th September 2018 This extraordinary, astonishing, ambitious and beautiful new musical breaks new ground in virtually all departments in this initial showing of a work-in-progress version at Matthew Warchus’ amazing Old Vic Theatre in Waterloo. And, bear this in mind: it is hardly credible, but the team behind it has had barely a year to put it all together since the theatre commissioned it. Rarely have we seen such a phenomenon on the British musical stage. Those lucky audiences who found their way into its brief 3-week run at The Cut will feel honored to have got in on something so wonderful at such an early stage. It’s going away for a year to be re-written and polished, and then it will be … Read more
The revival of Harlequinade, directed by Branagh and Ashford, now playing at the Garrick Theatre (in a 100 minute experience that includes All On Her Own and no intervals) is something of a revelation. Mostly, Harlequinade is seen in conjunction with The Browning Version, one of Rattigan’s masterpieces, usually as a curtain raiser. To my mind, that combination has never worked and Harlequinade has always seemed pale and irksome by comparison with The Browning Version. But, here, released from the curtain raiser position, placed directly in the spotlight, splendidly set up by the intense darkness of All On Her Own, the play can shine.
Dench’s verse speaking is unrivalled. She picks each word and gives it full, accurate weight, landing the sense, purpose and exact emotion of every glittering phrase. She is wily, wise and wonderful. Her pained berating of Leontes when she tells him Hermione is dead is one of the greatest moments in theatre I have ever witnessed. So powerful, it knocks the breath from your body.
It has been announced today that the new cast of Sunny Afternoon, the musical based on the music of The Kinks, will start in the Olivier Award-winning musical on 5th October 2015. The new cast is Danny Horn (Doctor Who; The Dead Dogs), who will play Ray Davies, with Oliver Hoare (Antony and Cleopatra, Chichester) as Dave Davies, Tom Whitelock (Times Square Angel, Union) as bassist Pete Quaife and Damien Walsh (Dreamboats and Petticoats) as drummer Mick Avory. At certain performances, the role of Ray Davies will be played by Ryan O’Donnell (Romeo and Juliet, RSC; Quadrophenia). Cast includes: Jason Baughan, Niamh Bracken, Christopher Brandon, Harriet Bunton, Alice Cardy, Oliver Hoare, Danny Horn, Gillian Kirkpatrick, Jay Marsh, Megan Leigh Mason, Ryan O’Donnell, Stephen Pallister, Charlie Tighe, Gabriel Vick, Damien Walsh and Tom Whitelock. With a book by Joe Penhall, music and lyrics and original story by Ray Davies, and directed … Read more