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Central Reviews

Welsh National Opera’s La Traviata – Milton Keynes Theatre

Composer: Giuseppe Verdi Director: David McVicar Reviewer: Maggie Constable The intriguing concept of Fallen Women and the differing life choices they make is the theme for Welsh National Opera’s Spring season of three operas at Milton Keynes Theatre this week under the auspices of Director David McVicar. With the subjects of human trafficking, exploitation and a world of glamour and ...

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14/48 The World’s Quickest Theatre Festival (Day 1) – The Y, Leicester

Reviewer: Rosanna Sloan 14/48 involves over 70 professional artists who write, direct, source props and stage seven short 10 minute plays in a day, inspired by a theme picked out of a the hat the night before. The writer produces the script overnight then the directors and actors have six short hours to rehearse before running it in a technical ...

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Emma – Old Joint Stock, Birmingham

Writer: Martin Millar and Doon Mackichan from the book by Jane Austen Director: Ian Appleby Reviewer: Selwyn Knight Jane Austen was about forty when her book of manners, Emma, was published at the end of 1815. In it we meet Emma Woodhouse, an intelligent young lady who fancies herself as a matchmaker, having introduced her governess to her husband. However, ...

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Hairspray – The Curve, Leicester

Music: Marc Shaiman Lyrics: Marc Shaiman and Scott Whitman Book: Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan Director: Paul Kerryson Reviewer: James Garrington Hairspray must surely be one of the great feel-good musicals, up there with the likes of Mamma Mia! Based on the 1988 film, it is set in 1962 Baltimore, and is a tale of acceptance winning over discrimination. Once ...

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A Life of Galileo – The HOUSE, Birmingham REP

Writer: Bertolt Brecht, translated by Mark Ravenhill Director: Roxana Silbert Reviewer: Selwyn Knight   Originally written in German shortly before World War II, this production is part of Birmingham REP’s Epic Encounters season, celebrating the work of Bertolt Brecht. This is a revival of the RSC production of A Life of Galileo, newly translated by Mark Ravenhill, which premiered there ...

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Tonight’s the Night – Waterside Theatre, Aylesbury

Book: Ben Elton Director: Caroline Jay Ranger Reviewer: Pete Benson Unless you are already a Rod Stewart fan this show is going to remind you just what a talent the man is. Tonight’s the Night is really an excuse to string together a selection of Rod’s many hits and given that, you might expect the plot to be wafer thin. ...

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Alarms and Excursions – The Theatre, Chipping Norton

Writer: Michael Frayn Director: John Terry Reviewer: Matt Dicks Answerphones, doorbells, oven timers: all harmless appliances that make our lives easier…right? In playwright Michael Frayn’s hands, such ‘helpful’ gadgets become torture devices inflicting confusion and disarray on a range of endearingly hapless characters. A funny and often philosophical series of short farces, Alarms and Excursions is the latest in The ...

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