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Cats – New Theatre, Oxford

Music: Andrew Lloyd Webber Lyrics: T. S. Elliot from 'Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats' Original Director: Trevor Nunn Tour Director: Chrissie Cartwright Reviewer: Mary Tapper Cats is an iconic musical that has a reputation to die for. Opening in the West End in 1981, it played for 21 years and original cast members included Elaine Page, Bonnie Langford, Brian ...

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Coriolanus – Donmar Warehouse, London

Writer: William Shakespeare Director: Josie Rourke Reviewer: Ian Foster [rating:4] This is truly a Coriolanus for our times. Josie Rourke’s intimate chamber production for her Donmar Warehouse made ripples by casting Tom Hiddleston in the title rôle, a rare return to the stage for an actor now catapulted into Hollywood’s hotlist, but in so many other ways, it is an ...

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A Christmas Carol – Charing Cross Theatre, London

Writer: Stephen Leask and Joshua Sills Director: Joshua Sills Reviewer: TL Wiswell [rating:2] Who’d expect there to be two London debuts of Christmas Carol musicals in one year? But so there is, the first a remounting of the popular American one by Menken and Ahrens, the second a home-grown effort making its first showing in the Big Smoke after two ...

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Slava’s Snow Show – Royal Festival Hall, London

Writer &creator: Slava Polunin Director: Victor Kramer Reviewer: Elizabeth Vile [rating:5] Returning to the Royal Festival Hall for a third season Slava’s Snow Show is a beautifully crafted yet disturbing show that catapults the audience into a dream-like experience that assaults the senses. Audience participation is compulsory as is a fun and playful approach to life which makes this production ...

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Lady Rizo – Soho Theatre, London

Reviewer: Agnes Frimston [rating:2.5] Last year Lady Rizo won the inaugural TOAST Award, and her show combines vintage arrangements of pop songs from every decade and her own new material, all sung with lung-bursting strength. It’s just a shame about the bits in between the music. Rizo, alias America’s Amelia Zirin-Brown, enters like a true cabaret star, in a red ...

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The Bootleg Beatles – Symphony Hall, Birmingham

Reviewer: Selwyn Knight Were he to be alive today, James Whitcomb Riley would be very confused; to paraphrase his famous test, ‘If it looks like The Beatles, moves like The Beatles and sounds like The Beatles, then it probably is The Beatles’. The Bootleg Beatles score on all counts. It seems an oversimplification to call The Bootleg Beatles a tribute ...

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Sleeping Beauty – The Waterside Theatre, Aylesbury

Writer: Eric Potts Director: David Siebert Reviewer: Pete Benson The theatre is full of excited cubs and brownies waving sparkling wands. The lights dim, the band strike up rock stadium loud, cubs and brownies scream and cheer and Sleeping Beauty the panto is under way with the most excellent Andy Collins as Chester the Jester here to guide us through ...

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Oliver ! – The Crucible Theatre, Sheffield

Writer: Charles Dickens Book, Music and Lyrics: Lionel Bart Director: Daniel Evans Reviewer: Sheila Stratford Not to be missed this festive season is the musical Oliver! by Lionel Bart. This exuberant performance has the audience captivated from the opening scenes, when thirty children raise the roof singing Food Glorious Food. The cruelty of life in a Victorian workhouse is exposed ...

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