sat 28/05/2016

musicals

Six of the best: Theatre

PLAYSBlue/Orange, Young Vic ★★★★★ Revival of Joe Penhall's contemporary classic is superbly staged and brilliantly performed. Until 2 JulThe Flick, National Theatre ★★★★★ Annie Baker makes the ordinary extraordinary. Until 15...

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The Busker's Opera, Park Theatre

Satire, we’re solemnly instructed in Dougal Irvine’s new musical The Busker's Opera, “has to strike a fine balance of entertainment and teaching”. Well yes, but it’s also generally wise (discretion, valour, and all that) to keep the theatrical crib...

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Show Boat, New London Theatre

The Cotton Blossom looks mighty fine in its latest London iteration, Daniel Evans's winning Sheffield Theatre revival of Show Boat joining the ongoing runs of Guys and Dolls and Funny Girl to offer West End audiences a synoptic view of Broadway...

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Funny Girl, Savoy Theatre

Vaudeville is having quite the West End moment, with Funny Girl inheriting the Savoy from Gypsy and Mrs Henderson Presents over at the Noël Coward. Gypsy is the pick of the bunch dramatically, delivering theatre history with real psychological heft...

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Guys and Dolls, Phoenix Theatre

It’s all change once more for Gordon Greenberg’s slick, protean revival, which began life at Chichester back in 2014, as three new leads join the show’s transfer from the Savoy to the Phoenix. If not a revelatory version of this 1950 masterwork, it’...

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Sunset Boulevard, London Coliseum

Could the fascination of Glenn Close's Norma Desmond transcend the frequent bathos of Lloyd Webber? Would they have sorted out the miking which wrecked last year's first choice of semi-ENO musical, the infinitely superior Sweeney Todd? Yes, to...

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Mrs Henderson Presents, Noël Coward Theatre

War bad, theatre good. That’s about the level of insight available from this amiable show, transferring after a successful run in Bath. It’s one of the weaker entries in the ever-popular backstage genre, sharing Vaudevillian DNA with Gypsy and a...

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Guys and Dolls, Savoy Theatre

The seemingly eternal British love affair with Guys and Dolls continues apace with the (somewhat recast) transfer to London of the Chichester production from two summers ago, and a more buoyant way to inaugurate the new theatrical year is hard to...

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Dr Seuss's The Lorax, Old Vic

You'll feel guilty for having bothered with a programme after seeing The Lorax, the Dr Seuss adaptation that puts saving the environment centre-stage at the Old Vic just as the recent climate change gathering in Paris has done on the world stage....

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Funny Girl, Menier Chocolate Factory

It's hard not to invoke the B word - Barbra, that is, not Brice - and I speak as one who bunked off school to catch her at a midweek matinee when Funny Girl first played London almost 50 years ago. It was standing room only at the Prince of Wales...

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Elf, Dominion Theatre

This new family musical, based on the popular 2003 Will Ferrell film, has rightly been censured for its extortionate seating prices, hosting the West End’s most expensive top-end tickets at £267.50 a pop – and that’s without the drinks, ice cream...

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CD: Sara Bareilles - What's Inside: Songs from Waitress

A pop album drawn from a musical could be off-putting to some. Images of Glee spring to mind or a tweenypop version of Idina Menzel – both of which seem quite a departure from Sara Bareilles’ hugely popular hits "Love Song", "Gravity" or most...

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