Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from June, 2017

Gloria- Hampstead Theatre

The thing that swung this production, aside from the fantastic writer that is Brandon Jacobs-Jenkins, and a great cast including Colin Morgan, was the news that the Hampstead had sealed bits of their programme to protect spoilers. Though I admit to be slightly unnerved by the instruction to let an usher use a knife on my programme at the interval....

Gloria. Who is Gloria? well in the spirit of the Hampstead's extreme spoiler tagging this post will remain major-spoiler free. To that end then Gloria is the slightly downtrodden employee of a magazine, the longest serving assistant amid a pool of cynical younger assistants. Gloria eventually becomes the centre of some shock waves that rip through that pool of assistants, and give us some insight into the modern world, and the makings and marketing of, well pretty much event.



The editorial team, led by Colin Morgan's Dean- senior and long serving assistant to Nan. He arrives dishevelled and hung over, having been at Gloria's …

Spamalot- Cardiff Open Air Theatre Festival

It's summer in Cardiff which means it's time for Everyman Theatre Company to open their annual Open Air Theatre Festival. Kicking off - or should that be galloping off- this year is Spamalot.
For the un-initiated Spamalot is the musical 'lovingly ripped off' from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Beginning life in New York in 2005 it arrived in London in 2006 and fast became a favourite with Python fans and musical theatre fans. Featuring all the 'hits' from the film (and a few other choice Python references thrown in) it's safe to say if you like Python you'll like Spamalot. But the beauty of Spamalot is that it's not only a loving homage to the Pythons, but also to musical theatre. With outright parodies (such as the wonderful and hilarious 'Song that goes like this) to little nods and references. It also fits the festival well- a musical that almost anyone can enjoy- unless you really hate Spam- and lets the cast show off both their musical …

Flying the Angel of History

This piece was originally written for Wales Arts Reivew, which can be found here. This is the longer version of that piece. 
“History is about the crack wide open” warns the Angels to Prior Walter. And history, of Reagan, 80s America and AIDS is certainly on show for all to see in the revival of Angels in America. But why does a play about 1980s America, specifically the title might suggest Gay America resonate still? Is it now a play that is dated?  Is it a historical piece? Set in 1985 and Addressing issues- from AIDS to Cold War Politics that have now receded into the past or given way to new concerns?  When viewed today parts of it seem terrifyingly current. Economic downturns? Extreme right wing political views taking hold? Fear of Russia? Vague but ever present threat of nuclear war? Impending environmental disaster? Granted, when the play was announced a year ago nobody could know we’d have an American President and British Prime Minister who genuinely longed to return to the da…