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Reviews

Reviewing is at the heart of what we do. Here you’ll find all the reviews that our wonderful team have written. If you want to find something more specific, why not pick a genre of show instead from the list in the menu

Singin’ I’m No a Billy He’s a Tim, The Cockpit

Written and directed by Des Dillon ★★★ Pros: A great script. Funny and poignant with strong themes, cleverly delivered in a very credible setting. The cast are fantastic and deliver wonderful comic timing.  Cons: Although pacey and energetic, it is a little drawn out. The early encounters lack the blind anger that could be present when staunch rivals meet in such circumstances. The context outside of Scotland may not relate to all audiences.  Our Verdict: Des Dillon is a very ...

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Around the House, Ovalhouse Theatre

Presented by the Ovalhouse Theatre Part of 33% London  ★★ Pros: An ideal platform for showcasing young talent.  Cons: The site specific setup was clumsy and contributed little to the production.  Our Verdict: A good idea for a production, but one which needed more engaging performances and more appropriate spaces to work to its full potential.  Courtesy of the Ovalhouse Having seen two fantastic youth performances at the Ovalhouse Theatre, I was happy to return in the long-awaited sunshine to ...

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Publius Horatius, White Bear Theatre

Presented as part of the AXIS Emerging Artists Festival alongside Vesta Created and directed by Menelaos Karantzas ★★ Pros: A clever set for a black box venue with some lovely direction and staging.  Cons: Quite slow which made it hard to follow and I was unsure if all the pauses were necessary.  Our Verdict: A worthy subject to explore, bringing ancient stories into the modern world and contrasting them with much more current geo-political events. Sadly I was left unaware of ...

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Vesta, White Bear Theatre

Presented as part of the AXIS Emerging Artists Festival alongside Publius Horatius  Devised by Fighetta ★★★ Pros: A group of versatile female performances not restrained by stereotyping. Cons: It was very abstract with no real plot. I find it hard to get into a show with no real fictional purpose or characters that I can relate to. Our Verdict: Some real talent on stage, and while I recognise that it is pushing the somewhat fixed boundaries of theatre and performance ...

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Hamlet, Dalstan Bunker (site-specific)

William Shakespeare  Directed by Andrew Shepherd ★★ Pros: Great idea, good choice of location.  Cons: No depth of character or context.  Our Verdict: A great idea, but sadly full of missed opportunities which needed no expensive resources, just better use of what was already there.  Courtesy of Stern Alarum Upon entering the darkness of a disused Dalstan bunker, the thick air, musty smell, the echoes and the cold are all pregnant with expectation, lending an eerie, claustrophobic lingering as you ...

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Ondisting, Ovalhouse Theatre

Reuben Massiah Directed by Josh Azouz  ★★★★ Pros: Top class performances and a very sweet story.  Cons: Nothing worth mentioning.  Our Verdict: An exciting production with good writing and a brilliant central performance from Seraphina Beh.  Courtesy of the Ovalhouse There have been plenty of shows about the riots in the past year which have explored stories on both sides of the coin. Some of them were hard-hitting, while others were sympathetic to the rioters. This production at the Ovalhouse ...

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The Blind & The Intruder, Old Red Lion Theatre

Maurice Maeterlinck Directed by Benji Sperring ★★★ Pros: Maeterlinck’s The Blind and The Intruder are said to have contributed to his winning the Nobel Prize. Tarquin Productions do The Intruder justice. Cons: For me Maeterlinck is a poor man’s Pinter. His ideas have been far surpassed by both Pinter and Beckett. Our Verdict: Possibly worth seeing, as artefacts of theatre. These plays would have shocked back in the 1890s. Courtesy of Peter Langdown for The Guardian Maurice Maeterlinck’s The Blind ...

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Californian Lives, King’s Head Theatre

Martin Foreman  Emma King-Farlow  ★★  Pros: Small venue with an intimate setting. Good performances from John Vernon and Carolyn Lyster. Cons: Three monologues one after the other can be a bit exhausting, and the audience’s attention does wane slightly.  Our Verdict: The stories reflect emotions and events that occur in everyday life and which resonate with the audience, however the monologue aspect was difficult to swallow. One-man shows are notoriously difficult for the actor; having no other actors to play ...

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Damage, Rich Mix

Ninaz Khodaiji★★★ Pros: The intimate space meant that each audience member became inescapably involved in the story. Cons: The consistent use of one narrative style meant that momentum was sometimes lost and audience members began to visibly lose interest. Our Verdict: A very brave and honest piece of theatre which engaged well with its audience. Theatre is one of the greatest and most powerful platforms for voicing aspects of yourself; opinions, Courtesy of Rich Mix your life, your experiences – the list ...

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Paper Dolls, Tricycle Theatre

Philip HimbergDirected by Indhu Rubasingham★★★ Pros: This show is lively, enchanting and huge fun. Lovely characters and wonderful music. Cons: There is a lack of focus in the script and some overacting from the cast. Our Verdict: Flawed, but wonderful.  Courtesy of The Tricycle Theatre The Tricycle theatre is a terrific, quirky space which is both a theatre and a cinema. It also serves jerk chicken for £7 – one of the best I’ve ever eaten and feels like the kind of ...

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