thu 18/07/2024

Theatre Reviews

Opening Night, Gielgud Theatre review - brave, yes, but also misguided and bizarre

Matt Wolf

Is there a more purely likeable actress than Sheridan Smith, the performer who was still a teenager when she stole the show at the Donmar in Into the Woods and who managed, as Elle Woods in the West End premiere of Legally Blonde, to bring tears both to her eyes and ours?

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The Divine Mrs S, Hampstead Theatre review - Rachael Stirling shines in hit-and-miss comedy

Gary Naylor

There are genres of theatre that demand buy-in from the audience – musicals, opera and the daddy of them all, pantomime. The usual entry price to the house, the suspension of disbelief, requires supplementing with an active desire to meet the production halfway. So it is with comedy. Crudely put, we could all sit there like Mount Rushmore if we wanted to, but what good would that do?

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Power of Sail, Menier Chocolate Factory review - alternately stiff and startling

Matt Wolf

The Menier Chocolate Factory has made something of a habit of late out of trawling unexpected corners of the contemporary American repertoire.

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MJ the Musical, Prince Edward Theatre review - glitzy jukebox musical with a superb star but a void inside

Helen Hawkins

In a secret chamber somewhere, the producers of MJ the Musical may be keeping a portrait of the King of Pop that has acquired all his scars, physical and psychological.

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The Dream of a Ridiculous Man, Marylebone Theatre review - from Russia with love

Demetrios Matheou

Like all great literature, Fyodor Dostoevsky’s final, eccentric, playfully wondrous short story seems to have been written just for us – across two centuries and on the other side of the world. It’s a resonance that ripples through Laurence Boswell’s eloquent, beautifully acted and staged, and sweetly optimistic production.  

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Foam, Finborough Theatre review - fascism and f*cking in a Gentlemen's Lavatory that proves short of gentlemen

Gary Naylor

In a too brightly tiled Gentlemen’s public convenience (Nitin Parmar’s beautifully realised set is as much a character as any of the men we meet), a lad is shaving his head. He’s halfway to the skinhead look of the early Seventies, but he hasn’t quite nailed it  he's too young to know the detail.

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Faith Healer, Lyric Hammersmith review - Brian Friel's masterpiece works its magic again

Helen Hawkins

Brian Friel’s Faith Healer isn’t noted for its laughs, but Rachel O’Riordan has found more than most directors do in this rich, masterly piece from 1979. Her approach pays dividends in all but one respect.

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Red Pitch, @sohoplace review - the ebullient tale of teenage footballers gets a rollicking transfer

Heather Neill

The reviews of Tyrell Williams' debut play on its first and second outings at the Bush Theatre were universally enthusiastic, even ecstatic. Multiple awards followed, including a clean sweep of those for first-time or promising writers. So how does it look in the newest venue in the West End, in the round  or rather square?

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WAKE, National Stadium, Dublin review - a rainbow river of dance, song, and so much else

David Nice

In what feels like the beginning, or at least the Old Testament, there was Riverdance. Now, ready to flow through the world once the world knows it needs it, there’s a rainbow-coloured river of just about everything musical and choreographic that’s found its place in contemporary Ireland, performed with a pulsating energy as well as a poetry that stops you wondering too much about all the connections.

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Harry Clarke, Ambassadors Theatre review - an entertaining curio

Demetrios Matheou

Is it just coincidence, or something about the post-Covid theatrical landscape, that one-person shows are becoming commonplace; don’t producers know that it’s OK to share a stage again? 

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Pages

Advertising feature

★★★★★

A compulsive, involving, emotionally stirring evening – theatre’s answer to a page-turner.
The Observer, Kate Kellaway

 

Direct from a sold-out season at Kiln Theatre the five star, hit play, The Son, is now playing at the Duke of York’s Theatre for a strictly limited season.

 

★★★★★

This final part of Florian Zeller’s trilogy is the most powerful of all.
The Times, Ann Treneman

 

Written by the internationally acclaimed Florian Zeller (The Father, The Mother), lauded by The Guardian as ‘the most exciting playwright of our time’, The Son is directed by the award-winning Michael Longhurst.

 

Book by 30 September and get tickets from £15*
with no booking fee.


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