mon 25/10/2021

Southwark Playhouse

The Last Five Years, Garrick Theatre review - bittersweet musical treat gets West End upgrade

Much has happened in the five years since your reviewer braved the steep rake at The Other Palace and saw The Last Five Years (not least my now getting its “Nobody needs to know” nod in Hamilton – worth a fistful of Tonys in prestige, I guess) so it...

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Money, Southwark Playhouse online review - ethical dilemmas for the Zoom generation

To accept or not accept a donation: that’s certainly the burning political question of the moment. So Isla van Tricht’s play Money – specially designed for Zoom – has proven more timely than even perhaps she suspected, though the question is made...

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Tarantula, Southwark Playhouse online review – spine-tingling love and trauma

I think I can safely say that polymath playwright Philip Ridley has had a good lockdown. In March last year, when The Beast of Blue Yonder, his new show for Southwark Playhouse, was closed due to the pandemic, he came up with an idea called The...

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Shook, Papatango online review - strongly acted, but depressingly predictable

Film is the new theatre – this we know, but does the distance imposed by the change of medium increase or decrease the impact of the story? The latest example of this problematic switch from stage to screen is the strongly acted Shook, Samuel...

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Gators, Tramp Productions online review - the glittering dark

She’s an ordinary young woman, and she really doesn’t know what to think. After all, things are way out of control. She knows that the natural world is pretty fucked, and that nothing grows in the earth any more — well, at least not on her patch....

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The Last Five Years, Southwark Playhouse review - an inspired actor-musician take on a cult classic

There’s concept on top of concept in this revival of Jason Robert Brown’s beloved 2001 musical, which charts the ebb and flow of a relationship by juggling timelines: aspiring actress Cathy’s story is told in reverse chronological order, while...

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Preludes, Southwark Playhouse review - journeying into the mind of Rachmaninoff

Where does music come from? That’s the vital question posed to Sergei Rachmaninoff in Dave Malloy’s extraordinary 2015 chamber work, as the great late-Romantic Russian composer – stuck in his third year of harrowing writer’s block – tries to...

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Once on This Island, Southwark Playhouse review - folkloric Caribbean musical charms

As British summer really kicks in (umbrellas at the ready), our thoughts might turn fondly to the sunny Caribbean. Good timing, then, for the return of Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty’s 1990 musical set in the French Antilles. Based on Rosa Guy’s...

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Other People's Money, Southwark Playhouse review - onetime Off Broadway hit retains its sting

Deft and funny and nicely cast, what's not to like about Other People's Money, the era-defining Jerry Sterner play in revival at Southwark Playhouse? The play's 1989 premiere Off Broadway allowed for a contemporary skewering of the roaring,...

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Ain't Misbehavin', Southwark Playhouse review - a jazz-hot musical revue

The joint is jumpin’ at Southwark Playhouse, now hosting an irresistible Fats Waller-inspired, Manhattan-set musical revue (a co-production with Colchester’s Mercury Theatre, where it opened last month). Though originating in the Seventies,...

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The Rubenstein Kiss, Southwark Playhouse review - slick spy drama doesn't quite come together

It's an ideal time to revive James Phillips's debut The Rubenstein Kiss. Since it won the John Whiting Award for new writing in 2005 its story, of ideological differences tearing a family apart, has only become more relevant. Joe Harmston directs a...

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Bodies, Southwark Playhouse review - shaky revival misses the mark

Bodies is the latest in Two's Company's series of what they deem "forgotten masterworks", this one making a less-than-triumphant return to the London stage after almost 40 years away. Written by James Saunders in 1977, it opened at the Orange Tree...

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