Archive for March, 2008

Review: Maria Friedman Re-arranged (Menier Chocolate Factory)

Originally posted on 21st March

Maria Friedman

I went to see Maria Friedman: Re-arranged at the Menier Chocolate Factory last night to start the Bank Holiday weekend.

Despite being only the 2nd night of a 6-week run, the Chocolate Factory was still completely packed out, reminding me just how popular Maria Friedman is in London. On this evidence, the theatre has yet another commercial hit on its hands.

But what about the show itself?

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Review round-up: What the critics said about Jersey Boys

Originally posted on March 20th Jersey Boys

I haven’t seen Jersey Boys yet, so I was intrigued to see what the critics said after this week’s opening night. As ever, the reviews are mixed – The Telegraph, The Times and Daily Mail were all very positive, The Independent underwhelmed, and The Guardian disappointed.

I look forward to make up my own mind in due course, but in the meantime, here’s a round-up of the reviews I’ve read:

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Upcoming shows – why musical theatre fans should be excited

Originally posted on March 18th 

In the last few years, west end theatres have become increasingly dominated by musicals. Unfortunately, I’m running out of shows to see, and I’m down to just 2 shows on my list – Hairspray and Marguerite.

I don’t like to wish time away, but I started wondering if there was anything coming over the horizon – surely it was about time some more shows transferred to London from Broadway. So, I’ve done some digging, and read the best of what’s already out there on the web to find out if there are any shows to start getting excited about.

The bad news – there are plenty of shows coming that fill me with dread (Legally Blonde, Flashdance and Never Forget come to mind).

The good news – rumours suggest that there are some exciting shows that will hopfully be coming to our shores in the coming 12-18 months. However, please note that I have no inside knowledge so cannot guarantee that they will actually arrive! There are 4 in particular that excite me most:

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Review: Lauren Kennedy (Menier Chocolate Factory)

Originally posted on March 16th Lauren Kennedy

Wow! I went to see Lauren Kennedy at the Menier Chocolate Factory this weekend, and she was ridiculously good. I was in good company too – Sir Trevor Nunn was also in the audience and certainly seemed to enjoy the show.

For those of you that don’t know, Lauren Kennedy is an American musical theatre performer. She has starred in Broadway in shows including Spamalot, Les Misérables, and Sunset Boulevard. She also performed in Trevor Nunn’s South Pacific at the National Theatre in London. She is also often associated with Jason Robert Brown, and played the original Cathy in his show, The Last Five Years

Right, that’s enough by way of introduction…

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Review: Dealer’s Choice (Trafalgar Studios)

Originally posted on March 11th 2008 


Last night I went to see Dealer’s Choice at the Trafalgar Studios, which was a treat.

After its initial run at the Menier Chocolate Factory (if you haven’t yet found the Menier, it’s time you did), the show has transferred to the West End for a limited season until the end of March. 

It can be hard for a production to move into a theatre for which it was not originally intended, but the Trafalgar Studios was a perfect host – comfortable for the audience, but small enough for the production to retain its intensity. When we got to the theatre, and found ourselves some way back in the auditorium, I was worried, but I was drawn in from the first minute by a combination of exceptional material and even better acting.

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