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: Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me, Southwark Playhouse *****
Amy Stow is dazzled by Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me at Southwark PlayhouseFrank McGuinness’ Tony award-winning play Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me first premiered in 1992, taking the 10 year hostage crisis in Lebanon, which began in 1982,as its backdrop. The play encapsulates the harrowing ordeal that is experienced by three men who are kidnapped and held hostage for an unspecified but undoubtedly long period of time. Thus the play begins, in a scenario that might otherwise simply sound like the beginning of a standard, albeit racist, joke: three men trapped inside a room, an Englishman,and Irishman, and an American. How these individuals negotiate their space, their endless hours, their sense of day or night, their bodily functions and, most importantly of all, each other, forms the basis of this astonishing play.
Taken from a true story, or rather, the stories of 96 foreign nationals from 21 different countries who were captured during the Lebanese hostage crisis, the setting for this play provides all that we need – or can – know about the characters’ situation, and their fate. A skillfully written three-hander, the journey of each man unravel as their individual sanity wanes, their despair mounts, and their energy diminishes, drawing the audience into the hope(lessness?) of their situation, their individual yearnings for freedom – and why.
The cast dazzle with their commitment to their characters, and at the close of the play the audience is left with a deep sense of admiration
Deftly directed by Jessica Swale of the Red Handed Theatre Company, the intricacies of the relationships between the three men are painted perfectly. The action, or what little the characters’ can partake in, is at once haunting, and excruciatingly funny. The cast dazzle with their commitment to their characters, and at the close of the play the audience is left with a deep sense of admiration, for both character and actor. Billy Carter as Edward (Irishman) in particular shines for his comic genius and turn of phrase, and silly scenarios (horse racing, the ladies 1972 Wimbledon final, movie-making, to name but a few of the mimed delights) are all hilariously executed by the three.
The setting for this play is apt; a triangular stage jets out towards an audience-in-the-round, and screens meet at perpendicular angles to further enhance the feeling of claustrophobia. Lights glare from behind the actors, to signify changes of scene, which momentarily blind the viewer, and provide a tiny taste of the uncomfortable experience -the perpetual headache – that Edward, Michael and Adam must endure. The eerie setting of the Southwark Playhouse is also a particularly choice location for this production, heightening tensions as the trains rumble all around.
Despite being a fairly long play – the length of which in reality adds to the sense of tedious waiting that these men must endure – Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me is a hard-hitting account of an era that most of us cannot imagine. A production like this is a rare treat and a must see for all those who wish to be transported into a world which, thankfully, the vast majority of us will never have to experience.
***** (5 stars)
Runs until 12th May
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