NYT Announces 2013 Season
Paul Roseby announces plans for the future of the National Youth Theatre
North London’s newest theatre opens doors.
The Park Theatre in Finsbury Park, North London, opens to the public for the first time.
Surviving Actors returns to Manchester for new event
The convention will take place on Saturday 18th May and will feature loads of industry professionals.
Fourthwall launches NEW internet radio podcast
A new performing arts podcast show, The Download, features interviews with playwright Philip Ridley and West End leading man Simon Thomas.
Blog: Postcard from the One Man, Two Guvnors tour
We catch up with former First Word writer Rosie Wyatt, somewhere between New Zealand and Australia.
Blog: Interactive theatre/cinema
Peter Hinton, a regular performer with Future/Secret Cinema shares his experience of a truly audience interactive experience.
Blog: Taking on an iconic role
Nadim Naaman writes about taking on the iconic role of Anatoly in the first UK Revival of Chess
Into Training: Starting Out
Ed Theakston continues his journey through his first year of training.
Review: Liza on an E, Vaudeville Theatre ✭✭✭✭
Jeffrey Jones is enthralled by Trevor Ashley’s two-hour homage to Liza Minnelli.
Review: The Play That Goes Wrong, Trafalgar Studios 2 ✭✭✭
There’s much to enjoy in this West End Transfer, yet Phil Matthews wonders whether this play matches the talented cast and direction.
Review: Merrily We Roll Along, Harold Pinter ✭✭✭✭✭
Emily Hardy follows the Menier’s transfer of Merrily We Roll Along to the Pinter, and finds its impact has increased, along with its capacity.
Review: Bare, Union ✭✭✭
Overhyped, overwrought, and finally over here, Bare is best enjoyed solely for the fantastic cast, writes Emily Hardy.
Review: Mary Rose, Riverside Studios ***
JBR reviews an atmospheric reading of J.M. Barrie’s dark Mary Rose at Riverside Studios.
J.M. Barrie’s Mary Rose presents as a dark obverse to his better known Peter Pan. As a counterpoint it reveals a somewhat uncomfortable preoccupation with childhood innocence extending some of the themes of Pan; the child who cannot grow up, and meditation on death and loss. In Mary Rose these are distorted somewhat, revealing an altogether less delightful narrative than the Disneyfication of Pan that we are used to. Structurally it approximates a late Edwardian ghost story, and reflecting much of the writing of the period, marries the highbrow style of the Belle Epoque with a more popular drawing-room comedy.
Matthew Parker’s skillfully directed production at the Riverside Studios wisely focuses on the ghost story, and this production excels when Parker populates the stage with trapped spirits. Although at times over-choreographed, the ensemble nonetheless demonstrate a haunting metaphor – that those who are lost are never far gone from our world. In astonishingly committed performances, the ensemble lend Cherry Truluck’s detailed set an eerie life of its own. Maria Haik Escudero’s haunting musical score accentuates the unease throughout the play while Gary Bowman’s lighting design, streaming in through the thousand chinks and cracks that adorn Truluck’s set, further adds to the atmosphere.
Maggie Robson, as Mary’s mother beautifully balances heartbreak and melancholy, with a forced stoic humour
The drawing room scenes, with their laboured comedy seem at odds with Parker’s otherwise intricate work, and while Maggie Robson, as Mary’s mother beautifully balances heartbreak and melancholy, with a forced stoic humour, the scenes feel strained and underpowered.
Underpowered too is Jessie Cave in the titular role although much of this is down to the ethereal child-woman she must convey. Stronger work comes from Carsten Hayes as Mary’s husband, who has a more fulfilling journey to embark on, from gauche suitor to lonely widower.
DogOrange have produced an effective reading of an intriguing, largely forgotten Barrie work which is largely visually stunning and affecting enough to warrant a visit.
*** (3 stars)
Runs until 28th April