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West End

The glitz and glamour which everyone knows. London’s answer to Broadway. You’ll find some of the best productions in the world here, so save up the pennies and get stuck in!

Double Feature 1, National Theatre

Edgar and Annabel  Sam Holcroft Directed by Lyndsey Turner ★★★★ The Swan  DC Moore Directed by Polly Findlay ★★★★ The Swan, courtesy of the Evening Standard As you will know from my review of Double Feature 2, I miserably failed to attend Double Feature 1 in late July due to an incident in the Solent. However, last weekend I made it back to the National’s pop-up performance space in the Paintframe to watch the second (well, technically the first…) batch ...

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Double Feature 2, National Theatre

Nightwatchman  Prasanna Puwanarajah Directed by Polly Findlay ★★★★★ There is a War Tom Basden Directed by Lyndsey Turner ★★★★ Courtesy of the National Theatre In an ideal world, I would review Double Feature 1 first, and Double Feature 2 second – I’m sure you’ll agree with my exemplary logic. This was the original intention, as I was booked to see Double Feature 1 in mid-July, and I only saw Double Feature 2 last week. Our plan was to then release ...

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A Woman Killed with Kindness, National Theatre

Thomas Heywood Directed by Katie Mitchell ★★ Courtesy of the National Theatre The National’s recent productions have been so good that I suppose it was only a matter of time before they produced one that didn’t live up to the high standards we now expect. Despite being classed as Heywood’s masterpiece, I cannot profess to having heard of A Woman Killed with Kindness before the National’s revival. Some basic research reveals that it is a critically acclaimed piece, regarded as ...

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London Road, National Theatre

Book and Lyrics by Alecky Blythe Music and Lyrics by Adam CorkDirected by Rufus Norris★★★★ Courtesy of the National Theatre The National Theatre’s London Road is a musical about the (recent) murders of five prostitutes in Ipswich. On the face of it, it sounds like it should be hugely distasteful: a horrifying and entirely true story which is still fresh in the minds of the victims’ families, which has been trivialised and turned into popular entertainment. Rather strangely though, it ...

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Emperor and Galilean, National Theatre

Henrik Ibsen, in a new version by Ben Power Directed by Jonathan Kent ★★★★ Courtesy of the National Theatre We were very pleased when we got our hands on our tickets for Emperor and Galilean, but perhaps not for the correct reasons. In truth, before seeing this show the excitement was due to the fact that it meant we needed only to see London Road (which we intend to do this weekend) in order to have witnessed every single production ...

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Rocket to the Moon, National Theatre

Clifford Odets Directed by Angus Jackson ★★★ Courtesy of the National Theatre The National’s season just past was absolutely second to none. With such shows as Frankenstein, The Holy Rosenbergs, and more recently One Man, Two Guvnors it has really been a triumphant few months for Nicholas Hytner and his team. Perhaps that is why their production of Rocket to the Moon went somewhat less smoothly, with its run being cut short at the last minute. Indeed, we saw it ...

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One Man, Two Guvnors, National Theatre

Richard Bean, based on The Servant of Two Masters by Carlo Goldoni Directed by Nicholas Hytner ★★★★★ Courtesy of National Theatre Richard Bean’s One Man, Two Guvnors, based on Carlo Goldoni’s Commedia dell’arte classic of The Servant of Two Masters, has been one of the most eagerly anticipated productions of the National’s current season. It reunites Nicholas Hytner with James Corden for the first time since Hytner’s outrageously successful production of Alan Bennett’s The History Boys catapulted Corden into the ...

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The Cherry Orchard, National Theatre

Anton Chekhov (translation by Andrew Upton)  Directed by Howard Davies ★★★ Courtesy of National Theatre Last year saw a huge revival of Chekhov productions to mark 150 years since the author’s birth. A highly influential, but notoriously difficult-to-read author, Chekhov is a polarising figure, especially in Theatre. While some praise his depictions of life in his works (his ‘theatre of mood’) others are frustrated by his lengthy and heavy plays. With this in mind, staging a Chekhov at the National ...

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The Holy Rosenbergs, National Theatre

Ryan Craig Directed by Laurie Sansom ★★★★ Courtesy of National Theatre It is interesting to see what the National Theatre has on offer in the Cottesloe, their most intimate and flexible space. The Holy Rosenbergs is a new play, by a new author, in a small venue known for housing more experimental pieces. In addition the plot touches on another heavily politicised issue, the Israel-Palestine conflict, which raised fears that it may be a repeat of the political preaching dished ...

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Cause Célèbre, The Old Vic

Terence Rattigan Directed by Thea Sharrock ★★★★ Courtesy of The Old Vic Going to see a show at The Old Vic is always a treat. While the National is a space where new, ambitious and risky shows are staged, The Old Vic has focused on delivering more conservative, but no less masterfully fine-tuned productions. No outrageous set, no dazzling special effects – but honest, high quality performances and direction. In the last year, The Old Vic has done this remarkably well ...

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