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Drama

A staple for us and for many if you fancy a more traditional play. When we first started Everything Theatre it was specifically to review drama. We’ve branched out over the years, but it will always be a favourite of ours.

A Lesson from Auschwitz, New Wimbledon Theatre – Review

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Pros: By honing in on Höss, Hyland’s play doesn’t choose the obvious Holocaust perpetrators (Hitler, Himmler, Mengele et al). Cons: Crescendos in Höss’ speech become distracting; likewise, proximity to the audience and prolonged emphasis of gestures can overkill the intensity. The term ‘political hygiene’ is a chilling one, especially when spoken by Rudolf Höss, commandant of Auschwitz-Birkenau, a place he has just described as ‘the largest human slaughterhouse in history’. Hearing these words on a hot Saturday night in gentrified ...

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Sardines, Drayton Arms Theatre – Review

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Pros: Sharp writing and good performances characterise this collection of scenes set in a tube train Cons: The lack of connection between the stories means we’re constantly having to get to know new characters “Make sure you take your belongings with you when you leave this life.” So runs the announcement that introduces this sharply observational piece set entirely on a tube train. The young cast each play multiple roles, as we eavesdrop on conversations and snatched exchanges between strangers; tight direction ...

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Misanthrope, Camden’s People Theatre – Review

Misanthrope Fanny Dulin (Eliante) Photo Anais Le Pape

Pros: Very entertaining and well acted performance which reminds us how relevant Molière’s plays still are today. Cons: The political point that Furlong tries to make is forced and doesn’t fit the play. In his preface to Tartuffe, Jean Poquelin, better known as Molière, wrote that “if the purpose of comedy is to correct men’s vices, I do not see why any group of men should have special privileges. If this were so, it would have a far more dangerous social consequence ...

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Olaf, Barons Court Theatre – Review

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Pros: Good to see an early Ibsen being staged. Cons: Early Ibsen sags in the middle. Ottisdotter Productions bring their focus to lesser known and obscure plays that emphasise the role of women in society. Having last been presented at London’s Adelphi Theatre in 1911, Henrik Ibsen’s Olaf belongs amongst the Norwegian master’s lesser known works, falling outside the 12-play ‘Ibsen Cycle.’ The version presented at Barons Court Theatre is an adaptation by ottisdotter of Anders Orbeck’s translation of Ibsen’s Olaf ...

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Machinal, Almeida Theatre – Review

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Pros: A brilliantly constructed set is a visually stunning accompaniment to the play. Cons: The disappointingly clipped nine episode format slows the plot down far too often for its own good. The Almeida is one of my favourite theatres so I pounced on the opportunity to see Machinal, by Sophie Treadwell. Both play and author were unfamiliar to me; stylistically Treadwell has apparently been compared to Virginia Woolf and is viewed as a leading purveyor of expressionism. The play, written in 1928, ...

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Left My Desk, New Diorama Theatre – Review

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Pros: Brilliant and politically sensitive script, fantastic cast and great direction Cons: Nothing to report A joint research report from Community Care and UNISON from 2016 found that social workers are suffering increasing emotional distress and verbal abuse in their routine work as a consequence of staff shortages and budget cuts. According to the paper the vast majority (80%) reported that during a typical working day they suffered emotional distress, while 40% also described being verbally abused. These numbers represented an increase on ...

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The Yellow Wallpaper, Omnibus Theatre – Review

Credit:: Lidia Crisafulli

Pros: Subtle shifts in tone and mood lace a darkly disturbing atmosphere through a beautifully crafted performance. Cons: Less is definitely more, but I would have relished the tension being cranked up even more! Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s The Yellow Wallpaper happens to be my favourite short story, so Another Soup’s production at the rustic Omnibus Theatre had high expectations to meet. It did not disappoint. From the start, Gemma Yates-Round’s charming portrayal of Alice has the audience wrapped around her ...

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