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The Sea Queen – The Scoop, London

Writer: Daniel Winder Director: Rae Mcken Reviewer: Maryam Philpott For centuries writers have been obsessed with a meeting between two sixteenth-century Queens that never happened. From Friedrich Schiller to Josie Rourke, the reign of Elizabeth I is defined by her compatriot cousin Mary Queen of Scots, but the pair were never face to face. However, Elizabeth did meet another female ...

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Brainiac Live – Garrick Theatre, London

Writer/Director: Andy Joyce Reviewer: Scott Matthewman Brainiac: Science Abuse was a Sky 1 entertainment show that ran for six seasons, being cancelled in 2008. That means that every single episode of the series upon this West End show for children is older than its target audience. Not that seems to matter to the kids assembled a silly hour of explosions and ...

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Mr Gum and the Dancing Bear: The Musical! – National Theatre, London

Book and Lyrics: Andy Stanton Music:Jim Fortune Director:Amy Hodge Reviewer: Maryam Philpott Schools out for the summer and theatreland has given itself over to feel-good comedies and family-friendly shows designed to entertain young and old alike. The National Theatre’s big summer production for kids is a musical adaptation of Andy Stanton’s book Mr Gum and the Dancing Beargiven surreal but ...

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The Worst Witch – Vaudeville Theatre, London

Writer:  Jill Murphy Adaptor: Emma Reeves Director: Theresa Heskins Reviewer: Sophia Moss You know that awkward moment when you’re scooting your way to school and you end up being zapped to a witch’s academy where you have to make potions, learn how to fly and pretend you know what on earth is going on? The Worst Witch is a fun, lively ...

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Peter Pan – Troubadour White City Theatre, London

Writer: JM Barrie Director: Sally Cookson Reviewer: Stephen Bates Say it quietly but London theatre seems to be booming. 2019 has seen a string of brand new venues announced, which include two Troubadours - this one at White City houses separate 1,200-seat and 800-seat spaces, while a sister theatre at Wembley Park is a single 2,000-seater. These are ambitious projects, ...

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The Borrowers – Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre, Chester

Writer: Mary Norton Adaptor: Bryony Lavery Director: Robert Shaw Cameron Reviewer: John Roberts  It’s that time of year again when the in-the-round pop-up auditorium takes residence in Chester’s Grosvenor Park and a large ensemble of actors bring three shows in rep throughout the summer (The Borrowers, Twelfth Night and Henry V). An occasion is always guaranteed due to the intimate nature ...

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Annie – Birmingham Hippodrome

Book: Thomas Meehan Music: Charles Strouse Lyrics: Martin Charnin Director: Nikolai Foster Reviewer: Hannah Powell The 2019 cast of Annie certainly does not disappoint. In a world of government bankers and a society which seems to treat the working classes as something to exterminate, Annie brings with it not only incredibly orchestrated music and intricate choreography but most importantly an ...

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Annie – Milton Keynes Theatre

Book: Thomas Meehan Music: Charles Strouse Lyrics: Martin Charnin Director: Nikolai Foster Reviewer: Gemma Fincher Who would have thought that after 40 years the story of a spirited 11-year-old orphan, desperate to find her parents, would still be so popular in 2019? With America still reeling from the effects of the stock market crash of 1929, Annie is set in ...

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