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Precious Little Talent – Orange Tree Theatre, London

Writer: Ella Hickson Director: Dominique Chapman Reviewer: Richard Maguire If the directors taking part in the Directors’ Festival at The Orange Tree are the future of theatre, then we can expect some exciting times ahead. In the hands of Dominique Chapman, Precious Little Talent, a fast, fast-talking comedy about transatlantic relations, shines as bright as New York’s Chrysler Building.  On a rooftop in the city that never sleeps, 19-year-old Sam meets, improbably, an ...

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Katie Johnstone – Orange Tree Theatre, London

Writer: Luke Barnes Director: Samson Hawkins Reviewer: Richard Maguire If only all new directors had the energetic vision of Samson Hawkins. He directs Luke Barnes’ new play, Katie Johnstone, as if it were an Olympic sport. His actors are athletes in this precise, tight production. And despite all the mess on stage, it’s as clean as a referee’s whistle.  Katie Johnstone is part of the Directors’ Festival running at the ...

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End of the Pier – Park Theatre, London

Writer: Danny Robins Director: Hannah Price Reviewer: Scott Matthewman There are many archetypes of British comedy at play in End of the Pier, Park Theatre’s new drama about funny business by Danny Robins. Michael is a mainstream BBC comedian, currently recording a second series of his stand-up show comprising mild, ineffectual material about struggling with duvet covers. His father Bobby ...

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L-E-V: Love Chapter 2 – Sadler’s Wells, London

Directors: Sharon Eyal and Gai Behar Reviewer: Scott Matthewman Sharon Eyal has become known for highly rhythmic dance work. Her last venture at Sadler’s Wells, where she is an associate artist, was the superb Used to Be Blonde for National Youth Dance Company, a show which used NYDC’s large number of dancers to great effect. Her latest work, for the six-person ...

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Alkaline – Park Theatre, London

Writer: Stephanie Martin  Director: Sarah Meadows  Reviewer: Stephen Bates  There are some parties where it is preferable to be a fly on the wall rather than an invited guest. Such is the case in Stephanie Martin’s new one-act play, in which Sophie throws a drinks party in an attempt to rekindle her fading friendship with Sarah. However, there is an ...

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The Muppets Take the O2 – The O2 Arena, London

Reviewer: Mark Clegg Jim Henson’s furry creations have been around for over sixty years, but they really secured their place in pop culture history in the late 1970s with The Muppet Show, its perfect blend of anarchy, knowing humour and sweet sentimentalism meaning that it was an immediate hit with all ages. Thanks to eight movies, countless other projects and ...

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But It Still Goes On  – Finborough Theatre, London

Writer:  Robert Graves Director:  Fidelis Morgan Reviewer:  Richard Maguire This is an odd one: a ‘lost’ Robert Graves play which documents the aftershocks of war and, surprisingly, has two characters, one male and one female, struggling to come to terms with their homosexuality. Very funny and almost embarrassingly melodramatic, it’s difficult to label this play with a genre. Perhaps, as ...

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The Lehman Trilogy – National Theatre, London

Writer: Stefano Massini, adapted by Ben Power Director: Sam Mendes Reviewer: Scott Matthewman The fall of Lehman Brothers in 2008 was one of the seismic events of a financial collapse from which the world has yet to fully recover. But Stefano Massini’s play, first performed in Paris in 2013 and presented here in a new English language adaptation by Ben ...

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