Quiz: Guess the play from the stage direction

Quiz: Guess the play from the stage direction

The cover of David Bowie's The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust that contains Starman. The cover of the vinyl edition clearly makes an appearance in play no 2

The cover of David Bowie’s The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust that contains Starman. The cover of the vinyl edition clearly makes an appearance in play no 2

Last week, the Guardian posted a quiz about stage directions and naturally I thought I could do better. Ten stage directions, guess the play, no multiple choice but a clue. Some times the clues are more fun than the question itself.

1. “He…

View On WordPress

Review: Little Revolution, created by Alecky Blythe, at the Almeida theatre

Review: Little Revolution, created by Alecky Blythe, at the Almeida theatre

Little Revolution poster“What do you think about the London riots?” Few questions are as loaded as this. It’s what we think, what we want to think, what we say, what we mean. And then it’s what happened. Because something happened to someone. Alecky Blythe – of London Road acclaim – attempts to unpack meaning and fact by taking the direct approach: verbatim theatre, the words of the people, immediate access to the…

View On WordPress

My Night With Reg at the Donmar: additional thoughts, undiluted worship and an ill-thought crossover with The Pride

My Night With Reg at the Donmar: additional thoughts, undiluted worship and an ill-thought crossover with The Pride

Julian Ovenden as John, Geoffrey Streatfeild as Daniel. Photo Johan Persson

Julian Ovenden as John, Geoffrey Streatfeild as Daniel. Photo Johan Persson

This blog has always been intended as a diary, and it’s only fair I write about the things I contemplate the most. Putting it this way, a second post about My Night With Reg is compulsory and long overdue. To use a phrase John uses, Kevin Elyot’s play knocked me for six and I have spent a good deal of my time recently…

View On WordPress

Photo of the week: Eve Best throws a rose to the audience (Anthony and Cleopatra, Shakespeare’s Globe)

Photo of the week: Eve Best throws a rose to the audience (Anthony and Cleopatra, Shakespeare’s Globe)

Yesterday, it was the last performance of Anthony and Cleopatra at Shakespeare’s Globe and Duncan (Shakespeare aficionado extraordinaire) captured this beautiful photo at the curtain call: Eve Best throws a rose to the audience, while Clive Wood kneels at the background and the rest of the cast looks on.

The composition is perfect and the post performance energy – especially the exuberance of…

View On WordPress

List: Top ten theatre productions for January to June 2014

List: Top ten theatre productions for January to June 2014

Imelda Staunton as Margaret and Lloyd Owen as Mike in Good People. Photo Johan-Persson

Imelda Staunton as Margaret and Lloyd Owen as Mike in Good People. Photo Johan-Persson

In a pattern frequently repeated in my life, I am about six weeks late in posting my top ten list from the first half of the year. I could have easily moved on, but 2014 is shaping into a vintage year, and I wanted to put a mark in the sand before the end of the year top ten becomes a hard and merciless…

View On WordPress

Lists: Three boys called Josh (and a boy called Lewis) or the Donmar young actor’s club

Lists: Three boys called Josh (and a boy called Lewis) or the Donmar young actor’s club

The Donmar Warehouse is having a good year. After Versailles (which I didn’t like), they hit a home run of three productions, each of them special in distinct and varied ways. Not only that, but a series of young actors took centre stage, and it’s been a huge pleasure discovering new talent for the ever expanding “Actors to Watch Out for” list. In strict alphabetical order:

Joshua James: Before F…

View On WordPress

Review: The Get Out, conceived by Robin French and Anthony Neilson, at the Royal Court Upstairs

Imogen Doel, Jonjo O'Neill (as James Bond) and Nathaniel Martello-White. Photo Alastair Muir

Imogen Doel, Jonjo O’Neill (as James Bond) and Nathaniel Martello-White. Photo Alastair Muir

It’s been more than two weeks since I saw The Get Out at the Royal Court and considering the production had only three performances and hardly a week of rehearsal, it’s safe to say it took me longer to write the review than it took for the production to come together. No matter. Don’t hold my slowness…

View On WordPress

Review: The Picture of John Gray, by C. J. Wilmann, at the Old Red Lion Theatre

Review: The Picture of John Gray, by C. J. Wilmann, at the Old Red Lion Theatre

From L-R: Bosie (Tom Cox), Ricketts (Oliver Allan), Gray (Patrick Walshe McBride), Shannon (Jordan McCurrach) and Raffalovich (Christopher Tester). Photo Miriam Mahony

From L-R: Bosie (Tom Cox), Ricketts (Oliver Allan), Gray (Patrick Walshe McBride), Shannon (Jordan McCurrach) and Raffalovich (Christopher Tester). Photo Miriam Mahony

Watching C. J. Wilmann’s play The Picture of John Gray, it’s hard not to wonder how much of it is true. Quite a lot, it turns out. John Gray, a poor boy from Bethnal Green, grew up to be a poet, inspired Oscar Wilde’s The Picture…

View On WordPress

Review: John Webster’s The White Devil, RSC, Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon

Review: John Webster’s The White Devil, RSC, Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon

Kirsty Bushell as Vittoria and David Sturzaker as Bracciano. Photo Tristram Kenton

Kirsty Bushell as Vittoria and David Sturzaker as Bracciano. Photo Tristram Kenton

For better or worse, I rarely research plays before I see them. Some plays, I know better than others, but when unfamiliar I don’t seek information out. Part of it it’s being otherwise busy, part of it it’s a belief the production will and should deliver in its own terms.

This is a long-winded way of saying I knew…

View On WordPress