Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Review: Shakespeare in Love at the Noel Coward Theatre

Shakespeare in Love 
Noel Coward Theatre
Reviewed on Friday 18th July 2014

Coinciding with the 450th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s birth, Disney's stage adaptation of Shakespeare in Love follows 'Will' as he struggles to write a play... which will eventually become one of the most iconic pieces of theatre ever written, Romeo and Juliet.

Will falls for noblewoman Viola De Lesseps who has a passion for acting, despite only men being allowed to perform in the theatre. Based on Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard's screenplay, Lee Hall has done a remarkable job transforming Shakespeare in Love for the stage. 

There is a cinematic feel to Declan Donnellan's production, but luckily this isn't relied upon and the story excels as a piece of theatre in its own right.

The on-stage musicians and singers provide some hauntingly hypnotic moments as the set sweeps back and forth. Perhaps best appreciated from the Royal Circle, Nick Ormerod's design is simple yet grand, with two levels towering above the stage.

Stage adaptation of Peter James’ Dead Simple for 2015 UK Tour

Following the successful stage adaptation of Peter James’ The Perfect Murder, the novelist is set to return to the stage in 2015 with the adaptation of his most famous and popular book to date, Dead Simple. 

Olivier award winner Ian Talbot will direct the production which is adapted by writer Shaun McKenna.

Dead Simple was the first book that featured James' now famous character of Detective Roy Grace. It is described as a "gripping, chilling, thriller" which has "all the classic suspense, twists and turns of a best-selling Peter James novel."

Forbidden Broadway extends run at the Menier Chocolate Factory

It has been announced that Forbidden Broadway has extended its run at the Menier Chocolate Factory. The production, which runs for an extra two weeks, will now close on Saturday 30th August 2014.

This updated version of the show, from Broadway director Phillip George, showcases (and makes fun of) some of the best productions from both Broadway and the West End including The Book of Mormon, Once, Matilda, Wicked and Miss Saigon.

Casting announced for Sweeney Todd starring David Bedella & Sarah Ingram

It has been announced that David Bedella and Sarah Ingram will star in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street as the title role and Mrs Lovett.

The production begins performances at the Twickenham Theatre in West London on Wednesday 10th September and runs to Saturday 4th October.

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street has music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and book by Hugh Wheeler.

Full casting announced for To Kill A Mockingbird

Full casting has been announced for the Regent's Park Open Air Theatre's production of To Kill A Mockingbird.

Daniel Betts will play Atticus Finch alongside Zackary Momoh as Tom Robinson and Christopher Akrill as Boo Radley. Original cast member and composer Phil King will reprise his role.

Full casting includes: Geoff Aymer (Reverend Sykes), Victoria Bewick (Mayella Ewell), David Carlyle (Nathan Radley/Mr Gilmer), Natalie Grady (Miss Maudie Atkinson), Jamie Kenna (Heck Tate), Susan Lawson Reynolds (Calpurnia) and Christopher Saul (Mrs Walter Cunningham/Judge Taylor). 

The Bodyguard confirms further tour venues & dates

Further tour dates have been announced for the UK and Ireland tour of Thea Sharrock’s stage adaptation of The Bodyguard.

The tour will open at the Mayflower Theatre in Southampton on Thursday 12th February 2015 before embarking on a two year UK and Ireland tour. Take a look at tour dates below (further dates to be announced).

Based on Lawrence Kasdan’s 1992 Oscar nominated Warner Bros. film, The Bodyguard has a book by Alex Dinelaris. The musical opened in the West End at the Adelphi Theatre in December 2012 where it runs until Friday 29th August 2014. 

The Phantom of the Opera announces new West End cast

It has been announced that Liam Tamne will take over as Raoul in the West End production of The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty's Theatre on Monday 1st September 2014.

John Ellis and Alicia Beck will also join the cast as Piangi and Meg, marking their West End debuts. 

Gerónimo Rauch will continue to star as The Phantom and Harriet Jones as Christine. Emmi Christensson joins the company as alternate Christine.

The production will continue to star Andy Hockley as Monsieur Firmin, Martin Ball as Monsieur Andre, Lara Martins as Carlotta and Jacinta Mulcahy as Madame Giry.