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Off West End

Ah, the Off West End. For those not familiar with the term, this is where the real magic of the London theatre scene happens. Great shows are born here, in pubs, in 50-seat theatres, in tunnels. Recommended for the adventurous – we can’t get enough of it, and you’ll save a quid or two as well!

Pity, Royal Court – Review

Pros: British clichés and drama tropes are nailed, aided by a vast number of fun props and different music styles, from rap to community brass band tunes. The cast is a deliberate cross-section of modern Britain, with some stand-out performances. Cons: At times it feels like the weirdness factor is cranked up just for a reaction, with little relevance to the plot. A seemingly relentless war section labours its writer’s and director’s point. It must be a nightmare to clear ...

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The Nightingale And The Rose and other tales, Barons Court Theatre – Review

Pros: Skilful adaptation and winning performances Cons: A few less successful moments Although less celebrated than his plays, Oscar Wilde’s prose work is every bit as accomplished and distinctive. His fairy tales in particular are a unique take on the genre – they’re wise and unsentimental, which somehow makes their impact all the more emotional, and Wilde delights in using animals and flowers as a witty chorus to comment on the foibles of the human world. Young company Orange Moon do a ...

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Artificial, Hen and Chickens Theatre – Review

Pros: Some witty and perceptive writing, with a strong supporting cast Cons: A lacklustre central performance from the writer/director Amazon’s Alexa, Google Home and Apple’s HomePod have become a regular feature in our lives, ordering our Ubers, playing our music and reminding us to buy pet food. But what if these artificial intelligences could integrate even further into our existence? If you passed Dom in the street, with his square glasses, neat moustache and schoolboy haircut, you’d think he was a parody of ...

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Romeo & Juliet, Waterloo East – Review

Pros: Much deserved applause for all actors that can recite Shakespeare without a breath. Cons: These performers need a bigger stage! Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet is one of my favourite pieces of writing, so I was hugely excited to be watching a live performance of it. If you aren’t familiar with the story of Romeo & Juliet, this is what you have to know. This updated version of the story is set during the warmest months of the year. People outside are celebrating ...

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For King and Country, Southwark Playhouse – Review

Pros: The cast can sustain tension and passion; it is genuinely moving to watch this less-discussed side of WWI history. Cons: A stiflingly hot venue makes several audience members lose concentration; due to the thrust stage, some lines are hard to hear when actors aren’t facing you. At the end of this month, it will be 101 years since the Battle of Passchendaele began. It lasted until November 1917. Unlike the current British heatwave, Passchendaele started with heavy rainfall, turning ...

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