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South West Reviews

WNO: Macbeth – Bristol Hippodrome

Composer: Giuseppe Verdi Conductor: Adriy Yurkevych Reviewer: Kris Hallett The King is Dead! Long live the King! Just like in the Shakespearean telling, Verdi’s operatic version of the Scottish play sticks close to the parallel journeys its protagonists go on, Macbeth from unsure war hero to despotic dictator and his wife from cold-eyed pragmatist to tragic heroine. Just like the ...

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Spaghetti! – The Wardrobe Theatre, Bristol

Writers and Directors: Pod Farlow and Emily LeQuesne Reviewer : Joan Phillips A case of Gerry Anderson meets Sergio Leone in Croon Productions’ Spaghetti! running at Bristol’s Wardrobe Theatre. Loosely based on Leone’s The Good, Tthe Bad and The Ugly, Croon Productions use rod puppets to play out the chases across the desert and the gunfights between the bad guy, ...

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An Evening With An Immigrant – The Cube Microplex, Bristol

Writer, Performer and Director: Inua Ellams Reviewer: Chris Oldham At the beginning of the night, Inua Ellams explains that An Evening With An Immigrant is more of a conversation than a performance, and warns his audience that it contains a fair amount of navel-gazing. Modesty? Perhaps. Selling himself short? Definitely. Ellams is an established playwright and poet, having won an ...

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The Merchant of Venice – Bristol Hippodrome

Composer: André Tchaikowsky Libretto : John O’Brien after William Shakespeare Conductor: Lionel Friend Director: Keith Warner Reviewer: Claire Hayes WNO’s English premiere of André Tchaikowsky’s opera The Merchant of Venice powerfully illuminates the story’s original themes of prejudice, tribalism and anti-Semitism. Keith Warner’s production, first performed at the Bregenz Festival in Austria in 2013, forms part of WNO’s 2016 Autumn ...

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The Weir – Sherman Theatre, Cardiff

Writer: Conor McPherson Director Rachel O'Riordan Reviewer: Emily Pearce The Sherman’s new production of The Weir (in conjunction with the Tobacco Factory Theatres, Bristol) is a subtle study of human behaviour that slowly gets under the skin. Conor McPherson’s one-act play set in a remote bar in rural Ireland received the Oliver Award for Best New Play (1997) when originally ...

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Veronica’s Room – Cygnet Theatre, Exeter

Writer: Ira Levin Director: Adam Morley Reviewer: Jodie Russell Like a Russian Matryoshka doll,Veronica’s Room is a play within a play within a play, each layerrevealing some of humanity’s darkest and most gruesome fetishes. The wolves, once they shed the sheep’s clothing, have yet more fearsome beasts lurking beneath. Everyone is suspect – the accents too, imitating the Americans and ...

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Heads Will Roll – Drum, Theatre Royal, Plymouth

Created by: Told By An Idiot Director: Paul Hunter Reviewer: Joan Phillips ‘A complete mash-up’ of myth, children’s story, colonial history and TV soap opera is probably the best way to describe Told By An Idiot’s Heads Will Roll co-produced by Theatre Royal Plymouth. This wonderfully silly idea converges the legends around the mythical city of El Dorado, ancient stories ...

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Don Giovanni – Tobacco Factory Theatres, Bristol

Composer: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Libretto: Lorenzo da Ponte Translator: Amanda Holden Director/Designer: Richard Studer Conductor: Jonathan Lyness Reviewer: Kris Hallet One of the great joys in attending opera is the sheer opulence of it. With its large casts, generous orchestras and a set budget that would keep a Premier League footballer fed for a number of weeks, it is easy ...

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