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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

Drowned or Saved?, Tristan Bates Theatre – Review

Pros: The poignant portrayal of Primo Levi is brought to life by an excellent cast. Cons: Condensed into just over one hour, the events described might feel fragmentary. Primo Levi’s contributions play a pivotal role in our understanding of the Holocaust. Born and bred in the Italian city of Turin, he was deported to Auschwitz in 1944 and owes his survival to the Nazis’ decision to employ him as a chemist in a rubber factory – which kept him away ...

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vessel, Battersea Arts Centre – Review

Pros: Let’s talk about an intriguing piece of abstract art Cons: Let’s talk about intense inscrutability Let’s talk about conceptual theatre. This is not a play in any conventional sense, jettisoning character and plot in favour of something almost entirely different. Let’s talk about four women sitting in a row on chairs within vivid yellow circles as though hemmed in by the whirls of an enormous highlighter pen. Let’s talk about reading and repeating lines that all begin “Let’s talk ...

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Bury the Dead, Finborough Theatre – Review

Pros: Irvin Shaw’s 1936 expressionist play about the futility of war is brilliantly brought to life by director Rafaella Marcus. Cons: This excellent staging does its best with a slightly uneven work, though the last third feels very much of its time. There’s always a lovely sense of expectation, going up the stairs to the Finborough Theatre. While the pub has recently been modernised and lost its old school atmosphere, the theatre remains unchanged and is as evocative as ever. ...

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Mirabel, Ovalhouse – Review

Pros: Mirabel is a highly original and emotionally affecting tale of loss and learning. Cons: The abstract narrative can be challenging and sometimes hard to follow. The end of the world has rarely been a cheerful affair. In films, television, novels, and of course, the Bible, the apocalyptic event has usually been described in terms of fiery chaos, fractured earth, and the horror of mass death. We are not short of inspiration for such imaginings, whether looking to the past, ...

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LOVE, Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch – Review

Pros: A gripping story, outstanding performances by an impressive cast, and a burning social issue that should be a priority in every politician’s agenda. Cons: none A woman dressed in a thawb (Mimi Malaz Bashir) puts the kettle on in a half-lit dining room. The boiling sound is soothing, and reminds us of the routine that many people follow at home every morning. The difference here is that this woman – her name is Tharwa – can hardly call this place a home: ...

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Billy Bishop Goes to War, Jermyn Street Theatre – Review

Pros: An engrossing war story brilliantly told by a two man cast. Cons: A disappointingly camp cabaret section at the start of Act II looks out of place and disturbs the story’s tone. There are subtle reminders that November has arrived: the clocks go back, street lights flicker into life earlier and Christmas adverts creep onto TV screens. Another permanent reminder is Remembrance Sunday. Billy Bishop Goes To War gives a very personal account of the titular character, told by his ...

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