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Showing posts from August, 2016

Review of Bugsy Malone at The Curve Theatre, Leicester

A road trip in the company of a local theatre person of repute allowed me to pay my first visit at last to that highly successful theatre The Curve. My viewing pleasure was also a first, and a particularly anticipated one on my list of those I wished to see live.

Alan Parker's magical child friendly gangster musical (words and music by Paul Williams) is a bundle of joy and custard and rife for a community production, such as this directed by Nick Winston (who also handles choreography).

While I would never say that I didn't enjoy this production, it did for me leave me slightly deflated from what should have been a totally uplifting experience. Production and performance wise, it was merely functional, while never reaching that crucial point where I would happily watch again or recommend to a friend.

The biggest problem came from a feeling of a lack of heart. Scenes shifted promptly and never allowed the actors to live their roles, leaving a factory like process to proceedings…

Northampton Theatre Preview - September 2016

With the Summer downtime coming to an end for the theatres of Northampton, the curtain is ready to rise again on a new season of shows in the town.

Top pick at Royal & Derngate has to be the return of the hit adaptation of Charles Dickens' A Tale Of Two Cities. Adapted by Mike Poulton and directed by the R&D artistic directer James Dacre, this version first seen in 2014 plays for seven nights in the Royal before setting off on a national tour.
Dates in Northampton are Saturday 10th to Saturday 17th with matinees on Wednesday, Thursday and the second Saturday.

For those wanting to revisit the turbulant times of the 1989 political world, there is a chance to see Jonathan Maitland's touring Dead Sheep. Telling the story of the ramifications of Geoffrey Howe's sacking at the hands of PM Margaret Thatcher and her eventual downfall at the hands of this "dead sheep".
It stars Steve Nallon, Paul Bradley and Graham Seed and runs at the Royal & Derngate between…

Review of Back In Time For Breakfast by Munchkins & Monsters Theatre Company at The Umbrella Fair 2016, Northampton

Munchkins and Monsters Theatre Company had what I personally consider two of the toughest audiences to keep entertained; a bunch of four, five, six, and whatever year olds gathered in a constantly distracting and sweltering tent with rock music emanating from another nearby tent; and myself surrounded by aforementioned children and in that sweltering tent. They had much to do to keep us absorbed in their performance of Back In Time For Breakfast. I have to say though thats against my fears at the start, very surprisingly this lively show managed to do just that, and for the best part me included.

Trapped in a secluded lighthouse with her family, Millie (Laura Richardson) dreams of magical journeys and on one night with a little wish on a star, a mysterious traveler, Jasper (Dale Forder) crashes his flying ship on the island and that magical journey becomes a reality.

This little piece has been lovingly created to encapture perhaps everything required of a children's entertainment …

Review of Henry V by William Shakespeare performed by The Masque Theatre at Abington Park, Northampton

William Shakespeare's Henry V was the sixteenth play that I have seen performed by Masque Theatre and I have to say it is the first that I didn't really enjoy. It was not though because of the performances though, as any play that has someone with the commanding presence such as Scott Bradley as the titular King is never going to be a disappointment. His "breaching" through the audience with the immortal line of "Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more" shook those present and unprepared. However no matter how brilliant the lines were delivered, their drive was lost in a rather ponderous staging of the siege of Harfleur, as the army marched forward to the unseen forces and then rather bizarrely shuffled backwards to do the progression again a few moments later. For me it was this scene that told me much of the sadly lacking of ambition of this production over those many Shakespeare's I have seen in the last couple of years.

It's not that …