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Drama

Of Mice and Men – Opera House, Manchester

Writer: John Steinbeck Director: Guy Unsworth Reviewer: Abbie Rippon Living in 2018 when social care, misogyny, immigration and racism make daily headlines, Steinbeck’s classic, staged by Selladoor reminds us how far we have come as a society, but more poignant is the revelation of how far we still have to go. For readers unfamiliar with the classic text, set in California ...

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Reared – Theatre 503, London

Writer: John Fitzpatrick Director: Sarah Davey-Hull Reviewer: Maryam Philpott Out with the old, in with the new seems to be the rather strange theme of John Fitzpatrick’s new play Rearedpremiering at Theatre 503, which deals with the Malthusian idea of surplus population in one small house in suburban London. With an ageing population placing greater pressures on societal resources this ...

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Normal – Bewley’s Café Theatre, Dublin

Writer: Caitríona Daly Director: Maisie Lee Reviewer: Ciarán Leinster Lunchtime theatre has made a welcome return to Bewley’s on Grafton Street with an intense, ambiguous production that allows actors Karen Ardiff (Phil) and Caoimhe O’Malley (Helen) to flourish in their respective roles as mother and girlfriend to an unseen man with autism, Gary. While the play does not quite live ...

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Lone Twin: Last Act of Rebellion – Dartington Live

Written and performed by Gary Winters and Gregg Whelan Reviewer: Julia Beasley Inclusivity has always been part of the process for performance company Lone Twin. The experimental duo, Gary Winters and Gregg Whelan, specialise in organising community theatre events and ensembles, bringing together other artists and, often, anyone who wants to join in. In past performance projects, they’ve cycled, walked, ...

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Educating Rita – The Dukes, Lancaster

Writer: Willy Russell Director: Sarah Punshon Reviewer: Katherine Kirwin This well-loved, well-known dramatic comedy takes place entirely within the offices of an English Literature professor, Frank, at an unnamed university as he meets with his first Open University student, Rita,  a Scouse working-class hairdresser seeking to know ‘everything’. Willy Russell’s play is known by many from the 1983 film starring ...

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Plastic – Old Red Lion Theatre, London

Writer: Kenneth Emson Director: Josh Roche Reviewer: Stephen Bates With news stories again dominated by sickening violence on London’s streets, the arrival in the city of Essex playwright Kenneth Emson’s Plastic is about as timely as it could get. The 70-minute verse play, a dark thriller first seen at the 2015 Latitude Festival, gives a devastating account of how peer ...

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Pressure – Park Theatre, London

Writer: David Haig Director: John Dove Reviewer: Maryam Philpott In the same week that the Royal Air Force celebrates the 100thanniversary of its establishment as an independent service, uniting the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Naval Air Service, David Haig presents his new play about the unusual role of RAF personnel in the run-up to D-Day at the Park ...

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Shakers – Carriageworks Theatre, Leeds

Writers: John Godber and Jane Thornton Light/Sound: Alistair Fox Director: Neil Knipe Reviewer: Janet Jepson John Godber wrote his well-known ‘lads’ play Bouncers in 1977 and it was inevitable that a female version would be conceived, so Shakers was created in 1985 in collaboration with Jane Thornton. To this day, big brother Bouncers is still much more famous and much ...

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