A UK Review in [exactly] 250 Words: "Sweet Charity" at the Watermill Theatre

A UK Review in [exactly] 250 Words: "Sweet Charity" at the Watermill Theatre

Sweet Charity, currently playing at Newbury's Watermill Theatre, is a fun, immersive and completely unique production. Performed by a very strong cast of thirteen actor-musicians, this show will draw you in, make you laugh, and surprise you more than once.

Sweet Charity is not at all what you would expect from a 1966 musical. The Watermill Theatre's production of this classic feels fresh and new, and draws out relevant, topical themes (particularly gender equality), whilst maintaining a fantastically fun, jazzy and mischievous vibe.

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UK Review: "Summer Holiday: The Musical"

UK Review: "Summer Holiday: The Musical"

The iconic 1963 film Summer Holiday, starring a young Cliff Richard, will have undoubtedly provided some relief to the rain-sodden Brits in the more than likely cold February of its release that year. In recent years, building on the success of the much-loved film, its story has found a new life on stage, having now been adapted into a musical. As I walked into the Leeds Grand Theatre, where I managed to catch it on its national tour, I looked forward to experiencing the summertime vibes the show promised to drench its audience with – I’m sure this would definitely make it the hottest summer we’ve had in England for a very long time…

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A U.K. Review in [exactly] 250 Words: "Jerusalem" at the Watermill Theatre

A U.K. Review in [exactly] 250 Words: "Jerusalem" at the Watermill Theatre

Jerusalem, currently playing at Newbury's Watermill Theatre, is a fantastic and unique production. This is no surprise, when you consider that it was written by Jez Butterworth (whose incredible play The Ferryman has just closed in the West End). Jerusalem is darkly comic, well layered, and razor-sharp.

Jerusalem spends almost two and a half hours making you laugh, and then sobers you up in the space of a minute. Tension within this production is created deftly, and the comedic elements of the play toy with this, at times balancing it out, and at times accentuating it. The resulting atmosphere is very effective.

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U.K. Review: "Everyone's Talking About Jamie

U.K. Review: "Everyone's Talking About Jamie

If you're from the UK and a musical theatre fan, then unless you've been hiding under a rug, you'll know everybody IS talking about Jamie. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to fit a trip to London to see this highly praised musical, however, thanks to More 2 Screen, Everybody's Talking About Jamie, was broadcast into my local cinema this evening (Thursday 5th July 2018). Did this musical live up to the hype?

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Review: "An Officer and a Gentleman" - U.K. & Ireland Tour

Review: "An Officer and a Gentleman" - U.K. & Ireland Tour

I know what you're thinking, another film to musical adaptation? Yes. However, for me, this was a bit different, I hadn't seen the original film of An Officer and a Gentleman. In fact, I was none the wiser on what the story was about, I purposely didn't research the film because I wanted to see if the story could unfold on stage neatly without needing to know the film. So I headed along to the Edinburgh Playhouse, and I can safely say, I was very surprised.

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Review: "Searching for the Heart of Leeds" at the West Yorkshire Playhouse

Review: "Searching for the Heart of Leeds" at the West Yorkshire Playhouse

For those of you that have been reading my recent reviews, you’ll know that the West Yorkshire Playhouse is about to undergo major refurbishment and will be closed until later next year, and in the meantime, will be presenting a selection of work in a new pop up space. Last night I was invited to attend the unveiling of its new name and identity, Leeds Playhouse, along with its final show in the Quarry Theatre before the redevelopment, Searching for the Heart of Leeds.

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U.K. Review: "Sunshine on Leith" - United Kingdom Tour

U.K. Review: "Sunshine on Leith" - United Kingdom Tour

Sunshine on Leith is a hit Scottish musical produced originally by Dundee Rep, written by Stephen Greenhorn and music by Scotland's favourite singing duo, The Proclaimers. I loved the movie adaption of this musical, however, I had never seen it on stage. Well, until tonight. I joined a sold-out audience at Glasgow's King's Theatre to catch West Yorkshire Playhouse's touring production of this much-loved story.

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Review: "Summer Holiday" - U.K. & Ireland Tour

Review: "Summer Holiday" - U.K. & Ireland Tour

It's summer here in Scotland! Even if the weather is terrible outside, inside the theatre, there is a new production of the hit Cliff Richard musical, Summer Holiday, touring the UK & Ireland. So I made my way down to the Edinburgh Playhouse to see if this show could give me a more summery vibe than the vertical rain pouring down outside.

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Review: "Talking Heads" at the West Yorkshire Playhouse

Review: "Talking Heads" at the West Yorkshire Playhouse

Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads monologues were first broadcast on television in 1988, and, like all of Bennett’s pieces of work have been over the years, were praised for their wit and sensitive poeticism that perfectly bottled the essence of the human spirit. Talking Heads has since gone on to enjoy a life of many revivals on the stage, harking back to the early format that Bennett’s formative works took: a single storyteller offering us a glimpse into their life. For its final production in the Courtyard Theatre before undergoing major refurbishment, the West Yorkshire Playhouse has revived the monologues, presenting them as two separate shows on the same days.

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Review: "On Behalf of the People" at The Square Chapel, Halifax

Review: "On Behalf of the People" at The Square Chapel, Halifax

Yorkshire based theatre company The Melting Shop claim to deliver ‘real stories that matter’ as part of their mission, and make it their goal to visit established theatre venues and communities that don’t have as much access to live theatre. Their latest offering is Ray Castleton’s new play On Behalf of the People, which premiered last year as part of the National Coal Mining Museum for England’s schedule of events to mark 70 years since the nationalisation of Britain’s coal mining industry. Having been a fan of the museum itself for quite some time, and always on the lookout for powerful, relevant pieces of theatre, I looked forward to catching the play on its stop at Halifax’s Square Chapel during its new tour.

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U.K. Review: "Hard Times" by Northern Broadsides at the West Yorkshire Playhouse

U.K. Review: "Hard Times" by Northern Broadsides at the West Yorkshire Playhouse

Northern Broadsides Theatre Company has been around for quite some time. Its audiences are undoubtedly full of loyal fans that first began following them back when Barrie Rutter formed the company as an answer to the lack of regional voices performing classical and extant texts. In a bid to engage with new fans, the Broadsides have been commissioning new writing and adaptations of classic literary works. The latter is their latest offering, in the form Deborah McAndrew’s adaptation of Charles Dickens’s Hard Times, under the direction of Conrad Nelson.

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U.K. Review: "Double Feature" at Edinburgh Kings Theatre

U.K. Review: "Double Feature" at Edinburgh Kings Theatre

Andy Gray and Grant Stott returned to the Kings Theatre tonight (Friday 18th May 2018), for the penultimate performance of their hit Fringe show, Double Feature. I had not yet seen this production so was looking forward to seeing what the pair had to offer in collaboration with writer Phil Differ, and director Ryan Dewar.

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A U.K. Review in [exactly] 250 Words: "A Midsummer Night's Dream" at the Watermill Theatre

A U.K. Review in [exactly] 250 Words: "A Midsummer Night's Dream" at the Watermill Theatre

You don't have to be a 'Shakespeare person' to love the Watermill Theatre's current production of A Midsummer Night's Dream. In this original, energetic, and hilarious production, the Watermill Theatre has taken a play which has been performed countless times, and made it into something which feels new.

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Review: "The Girl on the Train" at West Yorkshire Playhouse

Review: "The Girl on the Train" at West Yorkshire Playhouse

Paula Hawkins’ novel The Girl on the Train regularly sits atop worldwide bestseller lists, and since its publication in 2015, has embarked on an even greater journey to well and truly cement itself in popular culture as an unforgettable thriller. This journey began with its adaptation to film in 2016, which brought it to even wider audiences; the next logical step in this journey was a theatre adaptation. Over three years since the novel’s publication, the West Yorkshire Playhouse has taken on the task, with a new adaptation by Rachel Wagstaff and Duncan Abel, prior to its imminent closure for major refurbishment.

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U.K. Review: "Wicked" - U.K. & Ireland Tour

U.K. Review: "Wicked" - U.K. & Ireland Tour

Wicked is one of the most iconic musicals in the world, with music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, book by Winnie Holzman and original direction by Joe Mantello. It’s latest UK & Ireland tour has just landed in the UK's largest theatre, the Edinburgh Playhouse, so I flew along to see if the story of the witches of OZ was still as popular as ever.

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U.K. Review: "The River" at Wildgoose Theatre

U.K. Review: "The River" at Wildgoose Theatre

In recent years, Jez Butterworth’s plays, particularly Jerusalem and The Ferryman, have been causing a real stir in British theatre and cementing his status as a true stalwart of contemporary drama. Sitting in between these two plays is his dark, haunting drama The River, and luckily, I got the opportunity to review York-based company Wildgoose Theatre’s latest production of it.

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A UK Review In [Exactly] 250 Words: "Burke and Hare" at the Watermill Theatre

A UK Review In [Exactly] 250 Words: "Burke and Hare" at the Watermill Theatre

Ton Wentworth's new version of the story of Burke and Hare is sharp and witty, and acted out by a cast of only three, all of whom cause a great level of comic chaos by darting between multiple roles … and many accents. Like many productions at The Watermill, Burke and Hare has the edge of something that's just a bit different.

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U.K Review: "Sunshine on Leith" at the West Yorkshire Playhouse

U.K Review: "Sunshine on Leith" at the West Yorkshire Playhouse

The Proclaimers’ musical Sunshine on Leith has been taking the world by storm, particularly after its adaptation to film in 2013. Now, around five years later, and in the run up to the West Yorkshire Playhouse’s closure for major refurbishment and redevelopment in the coming months, the theatre has mounted a brand new production of the musical. With the Playhouse’s Artistic Director James Brining directing, I looked forward to taking my seat in the Quarry Theatre and seeing his efforts to tell a story that timelessly stretches beyond the highland borders.

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