Regardless of how it is characterised, Michael Strassen’s production of Tommy is a genuine triumph, practically perfect in every way. From the first note, it grabs you by the throat, demands that attention be paid, and does not relent in that until Tommy spins the oversized pinball in his hands and a blackout signals the show has ended. Intervals are rarely resented these days, but I freely confess to resenting the interval here. This is an exceptional reimagining of a work rarely performed on stage. Vocally, dramatically and artistically it is an unqualified triumph. Ashley Birchall is a rising star, John Barr an established one.
The Who’s Tommy will return to London for a limited run at the Greenwich Theatre twenty years after it’s last production in London. The production of the classic rock musical will mark the 40th Anniversary of the film and will celebrate The Who’s 50th Anniversary. Casting will include Ashley Birchall (Starlight Express, Germany) as Tommy, John Barr (ENO’s Sweeney Todd, Les Miserables) as Uncle Ernie, … Read more
Michael Strassen’s richly detailed, splendidly cast, and lovingly staged premiere production of Duncton Wood (music and lyrics from Mark Carroll, book by James Peries, adapted from Horwood’s book) is now playing at the Union Theatre. Strassen has first rate support from his entire creative team and each produce excellent work in the fulfilment of Strassen’s vision: Josh Sood as Musical Director, Jean Gray as Designer, Tim Deiling as Lighting Designer, Orchestrations from Michael England and Vocal Arrangements by David Steadman. Everyone here does exemplary work. The cast of 16 is exceptional and, with only one slight reservation, superbly and convincingly portrays the Duncton Wood moles.