News: Chichester Festival Theatre announce Winter 2021/22 season

A feast of visiting drama, dance, comedy, family shows and music for all tastes and ages is heading to Chichester Festival Theatre for the Winter 2021/22 season.

We’re particularly proud to offer a new home-grown production: the revival of one of the best plays of modern times, John Patrick Shanley’s Pulitzer Award-winning Doubt: A Parable, directed by Lia Williams and starring Monica Dolan and Sam Spruell in their Chichester debuts. Continue reading “News: Chichester Festival Theatre announce Winter 2021/22 season”

Late summer casting news

Vivienne Acheampong, Adelayo Adedayo, Ray Emmet Brown, Ernest Kingsley Jnr, Tamara Lawrance, Rudolphe Mdlongwa, Mark Monero and Cecilia Noble have been cast in the UK premiere of Is God Is written by Aleshea Harris and directed by Royal Court Associate Director Ola Ince. 

Is God Is by Aleshea Harris will run in the Royal Court Jerwood Theatre Downstairs from Friday 10 September 2021 – Saturday 23 October 2021 with press night on Thursday 16 September 2021, 7.30pm.

With set design by Chloe Lamford, costume design by Natalie Pryce, lighting design by Simisola Lucia Majekodumni, composition by Renell Shaw, sound design by Max Perryment, movement direction from Imogen Knight, choreography by Jordan ‘JFunk’ Franklin and special effects design by Susanna Peretz. The associate designer is Shankho Chaudhuri, the assistant director is Leian John-Baptiste, the dialect coach is Dawn-Elin Fraser and the fight director is Philip D’Orléans. Continue reading “Late summer casting news”

Review: The Band, Manchester Opera House

“Do the boys have a song for a moment like this?”

Having a bit of fun with this one – there was actually 8 of us in attendance at new Take That musical The Band (with a boisterous Saturday evening crowd), for the occasion of celebrating my niece’s 13th birthday. And from ages 10 to (almost) 70, we all really enjoyed ourselves, so I put everyone to work to chip in with their favourite bits about the show, a la Smash Hits. Written by Tim Firth, what I found particularly pleasing was that The Band actually proves an engaging and entertaining piece of theatre, one that has clearly thought about the jukebox form and how it might be played with.

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Continue reading “Review: The Band, Manchester Opera House”

2015 BroadwayWorld UK Awards – Winners’ list

Best Choreography in a New Production of a Musical
Drew McOnie – Hairspray – Leicester Curve

Best Costume Design in a New Production of a Play or Musical
Sue Blane – The Rocky Horror Show – Playhouse Theatre

Best Direction of a New Production of a Musical
Trevor Nunn – Cats – London Palladium

Best Direction of a New Production of a Play
Lyndsey Turner – Hamlet – Barbican

Best Featured Actor in a New Production of a Musical
Steve Rushton – American Idiot – Arts Theatre

Best Featured Actor in a New Production of a Play
Will Austin – Gods And Monsters – Southwark Playhouse

Best Featured Actress in a New Production of a Musical
Kerry Ellis – Cats – London Palladium

Best Featured Actress in a New Production of a Play
Rachel Lumberg – Romeo and Juliet – Sheffield Crucible

Best Leading Actor in a New Production of a Musical
Killian Donnelly – Memphis – Shaftesbury Theatre

Best Leading Actor in A New Production of a Play
Benedict Cumberbatch – Hamlet – Barbican Theatre

Best Leading Actress in a New Production of a Musical
Imelda Staunton – Gypsy – Savoy Theatre

Best Leading Actress in a New Production of a Play
Olivia Vinall – The Hard Problem – National Theatre

Best Lighting Design in a New Production of a Play or Musical
Hugh Vanstone – Future Conditional – Old Vic

Best Long-Running Show in the West End
Les Miserables Queen’s Theatre

Best Musical Direction (Fringe or regional)
George Dyer – Annie – UK tour

Best Musical Direction (West End)
Richard Morris – American Idiot – Arts Theatre

Best New Musical in the West End
American Idiot – Arts Theatre

Best New Play
The Play That Goes Wrong – Duchess Theatre

Best New Production of a Musical (Fringe/Regions)
The Spitfire Grill – Union Theatre

Best New Production of a Play (Fringe/Regions)
Crucible – Manchester

Best Performance in a Long-Running West End show (Female)
Rachelle Ann Go – Les Miserables – Queens Theatre

Best Performance in a Long-Running West End show (Male)
Jon Jon Briones – Miss Saigon – Prince Edward Theatre

Best Revival of a Musical
Grand Hotel – Southwark Playhouse

Best Revival of a Play
Harvey – Theatre Royal Haymarket

Best Scenic Design in a New Production of a Play or Musical
Es Devlin – Hamlet – Barbican

Best Sound Design in a New Production of a Play or Musical
Chris Whybrow – American Idiot – Arts Theatre

Theatrical Event of the Year
Miss Saigon 25th Anniversary Concert – Prince Edward Theatre

Theatrical Venue of the Year
Queens Theatre

Understudy of the Year in any production of a Play or Musical (Female)
Marsha Songcome – Miss Saigon – Prince Edward

Understudy of the Year in any production of a Play or Musical (Male)
Luke Baker – American Idiot – Arts Theatre

2013 BroadwayWorld UK Awards – Winners’ list

Best Choreography in a New Production of a Musical
WINNER – Casey Nicholaw – The Book of Mormon
Peter Darling – Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Steven Hoggett – Once the Musical

Best Costume Design in a New Production of a Play or Musical
WINNER – Mark Thompson – Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Ann Roth – The Book of Mormon
David Woodhead – Titanic Continue reading “2013 BroadwayWorld UK Awards – Winners’ list”

Review: The Way of the World, Crucible

“I’m in a maze yet, like a dog in a dancing-school”

I doubt I could have named a single Restoration comedy for you even just a few months ago but trends in theatre change as endlessly as in fashion, and I now find myself having seen three already this year. Sheffield’s Crucible Theatre get in on the act with this revival of William Congreve’s The Way of the World (ahead of Chichester who are putting it on as part of this year’s festival) from 1700, following my trips to the Donmar’s The Recruiting Officer (1706) and the National’s She Stoops to Conquer (1773).

Lyndsey Turner’s production here though is the only one of these that has taken major liberties with the play, in this case setting in the modern day where ‘Restoration’ is a new trend that has swept society. At its simplest, the plot follows the young Mirabell who is courting the delicious Millament, yet comes up against her formidable aunt Lady Wishfort who is set against the match and threatens to withhold her fortune, which many others have their eye on and are willing to commit dastardly deeds to get it. But the play is rarely that simple, and with the directorial device at play, I must admit it challenged me just a little (and made me wish I’d read a synopsis beforehand). Continue reading “Review: The Way of the World, Crucible”

Review: The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, Vaudeville Theatre

“You have to speak up, Little Voice”

The last time I saw Diana Vickers was in the less than salubrious surroundings of the delightful Nightingales nightclub in Birmingham and I was less than sober. Having just been evicted from The X-Factor semifinals, one might have expected the predictable slide into obscurity but she surprised many when announced as the titular character in this revival of The Rise and Fall of Little Voice.

The story is of the painfully shy LV who lives a hermit-like existence at home with her horrendous mother, Mari, and her only release is singing along to the vinyl records of female singers left to her by her deceased father. She has a prodigious talent for this which is only recognised by one of her mother’s latest pickups who then sees this as an opportunity to be exploited for his own personal gain. Despite the name of the play, this is Mari’s show. Sharp opens with a 20 minute blast of self-absorbed narcissism which exposes the full heartlessness of her character and she only becomes more vindictive as we and LV progress. It is stunning to watch, but sadly becomes a little repetitive, a fault of the play rather than Sharp though. Continue reading “Review: The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, Vaudeville Theatre”