Posts Tagged ‘Bruno Poet’

Review – From Here to Eternity, Shaftesbury Theatre

Friday 18 October 2013

mainTwo love affairs, a spolier alert, extreme violence, several uses of the ‘F’ word, a body count higher than in Hamlet, drag queens, pugilism, racism, homophobia, prostitution, references to a hysterectomy and gonorrhea, a prison chain gang, the attack on Pearl Harbour, a gay kiss, a bare bottie and a soldier taking a leak on stage. Phew.

This isn’t your bog standard (unless you count the urination) musical fare and there’s an awful lot to fit in, let alone adding songs to increase the burden. If the critics don’t like From Here to Eternity the title may lend itself a little to easily to some chucklesome headlines.

Yet, there was something promising about the opening music, played on a lone ukulele as the front cloth dissolved to crashing waves that here, even at the Shaftesbury Theatre – a venue notorious for flop shows – there might just be a new musical with something special.

Of course there was still a long way to go. 2 hours 45 minutes to be precise. Plenty of time for things to go horribly wrong. Read the rest of this entry »

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Review – Sweet Bird of Youth, Old Vic

Monday 10 June 2013

sboy_tovweb_400x6001The Whingers have always celebrated the virtues of good theatrical wiggery, so we are disposed to discuss one particular wig before moving on. Do not be fooled by the production’s posters (right). The tin is very misleading.

Sweet Bird of Youth introduces us to Alexandra Del Lago (Kim Cattrall), a heavy-drinking, pill-popping faded Hollywood legend and self-professed “monster” (who’s just fled the calamitous premiere of her comeback movie), groaning face down in a hotel bed. She wakes up with a panic attack and screams for oxygen. Small wonder; it appears something rather frightful has crawled onto her head during the night. Now Phil’s has a mind of its own too first thing in the morning (his hair that is) and of course Del Lago’s hair’s meant to be a mess, yet there was something about it that wasn’t quite right. Or, as one of the Whingers’ entourage noted sagely, “it looks a bit nylony”. Perhaps that was the point.

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Review – Frankenstein, National Theatre

Thursday 17 February 2011

When the West End Whingers was created on a metaphorical slab in Soho’s White Horse hostelry some five years ago there were no very, very frightening thunderbolts or lightening or power surges blacking out the West End and no mobs of angry gay villagers.

Indeed their genesis was a much duller affair than even might be inferred from their prose.

Less prosaic, however, was the extraordinary dream that Phil had recently when he drifted off on the banks of the Queen Mother Reservoir just off the M4, the result of some very Swiss cheese. In it he was married to the poetess Pam Ayres and a Gothic Dr Philistein (or possibly Philistine) was giving life to the Andrew known and loved today. The creature was assembled from any detritus Philistein could lay his hands on scavenged from skips around the Walworth Road with the occasional body part thrown in, he linked up his monstrous achievement to Vinopolis and waited impatiently for some inclement weather.

But interestingly even Phil’s unleashed, gratinated Gothic dreams could not compete with the vision that director Danny Boyle and designer Mark Tildesley have conjured up at the National Theatre for Nick Dear‘s version of Mary Shelley‘s Frankenstein. For it does look rather splendid.
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Review – Every Good Boy Deserves Favour, National Theatre

Sunday 18 January 2009

every-good-boy_149_224chke7c

A Accurately Advertised running time for once. 65 minutes long.

B Brevity. The Whingers approve.

C Coughing. Had the National imported the audience from Oliver! wholesale?

D Don’t people bother with cough sweets theses days?

E Every Good Boy Deserves Favour is a play for actors and orchestra (Southbank Sinfonia) by Tom Stoppard and André Previn. It’s a rarely performed curiosity. An extravagance. But is it worth the effort? Read the rest of this entry »