It’s been a long time since I’ve written my theatre diary (the last one was back in January!) but in an effort to give my blogging a reboot, I’m restarting it to talk about what I’ll be seeing and reviewing throughout the month.
All My Sons, Rose Theatre Kingston (Wednesday 2nd)
As well as studying it at various stages of school and university, I have great memories of seeing this Miller classic in the West End back in 2010 (directed by Howard Davies, who passed away last month). It’s great to rediscover Miller’s blistering play and I always enjoy visiting the Rose, one of the most welcoming and friendly theatres in London. Click here for more information and here to read my review.
The Last Five Years, St James Theatre (Wednesday 9th)
In the final season at the St James before it becomes the dubiously-named The Other Palace, this Jason Robert Brown two-hander arrives in London with a promising cast of Samantha Barks and Jonathan Bailey. While Barks is known for her musical theatre roles, I’m used to seeing Bailey doing straight acting; it will be interesting to see how his singing holds up against hers. Click here for more information.
One Night In Miami, Donmar Warehouse (Thursday 18th)
Although I’ve visited their new King’s Cross venue, it’s been a long time since I’ve been down to the Donmar. One Night In Miami portrays the seemingly unlikely but real meeting of four friends in a hotel room in February 1964: new heavyweight champion Cassius Clay, activist Malcolm X, singer Sam Cooke and American football star Jim Brown. This is Kemp Powers’s fictional account of the evening that actually took place as they celebrated Clay’s victory and found their place in a changing world – as Cooke sang, “a change is gonna come…”. Click here for more information.
Backchat Live: Michael and Jack Whitehall, New Wimbledon Theatre (Sunday 20th)
Something a bit different here as I’m heading to my now local theatre for a special one-off live performance of Jack Whitehall’s hit TV show, co-hosted with his father Michael. Special guests include Michael McIntyre, Peter Jones and Holly Willoughby, and all the proceeds will go to the Oak Centre for Children and Young People (at the Royal Marsden Hospital) and Anthony Nolan. Click here for more information.
A Pacifist’s Guide to the War on Cancer, National Theatre (Tuesday 22nd)
I’ll be honest, I’m really not sure what I’m going to make of this one. A co-production with Complicite, with a book by Bryony Kimmings, this is sure to be a boundary-pushing piece – an all-singing, all-dancing musical about cancer could certainly be divisive and from reading the reviews it’s going to be an interesting one. The show promises “big anthems, shiny costumes, blood, tears and real cancer patients”; and while it makes sense to put such a universal topic on the stage, each person’s reaction will be incredibly personal. Certainly it will be nothing like I’ve ever seen before. Click here for more information.
Boys, Lost Theatre (Thursday 24th)
Ella Hickson’s play gets a London revival at this Lambeth fringe theatre. The dark comedy focuses on a group of friends on the brink of leaving university amongst a rubbish collectors strike in Edinburgh. Nostalgia and soul-searching mounts up along the heaps of rubbish, and the trash bags are joined by the dirty laundry that everyone begins to air. I’m looking forward to seeing this play, with its incredibly current feel, at a venue I’ve never visited before. Click here for more information.
Mamma Mia!, Novello Theatre (Saturday 26th)
I’m ending the month on a high. Given how depressing the world’s politics are currently, it’ll be a joy to sit down and watch a fun, feel-good, colourful musical with some great sing-along opportunities for a girly night out. It’s several years since I first saw the show on stage and it’s moved theatre since then, so I’m excited to make a return visit. Click here for more information.
Happiness Is A Cup of Tea, Theatre N16 (Wednesday 30th)
The title of this show is pretty much my life motto, so I was disappointed to miss this one-woman show on its previous outings in London and Edinburgh. Now it’s back at Theatre N16, confusingly now located in SW12 after moving from its original Stoke Newington home last year. I always enjoy checking out a new venue and I’m looking forward to seeing this show that considers questions of mortality, grief and loss and encompasses song, story-telling and puppetry. Click here for more information.