Posts Tagged ‘Matthew Warchus’

Review – All My Sons, Old Vic

Friday 19 April 2019

Whisper it. This is really rather good but let’s not make a big song and dance about it, say it ever so quietly so no one can hear you.

For this is the 1947 All My Sons by Marilyn Monroe’s ex husband starring former Flying Nun and double Academy Award-winner Sally (you like me, right now, you like me!) Field, and the go-to for cinematic and television POTUSes Bill Pullman. How Hollywood is that? Come see them bucking that hoary old stereotype of the loud American. They’re oh so quiet. Read the rest of this entry »

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Review – Groundhog Day, Old Vic

Friday 5 August 2016

4180No, we’re not going to do it. Post the review and repeat it over and over again. The poster’s done it. Everyone will be do it. Heck, we exhausted the gag in the pub before we even got to the Old Vic. Far too obvious. Tempting though.

Tim Minchin‘s long-awaited (by us at least) musical version of the hugely entertaining 1993 film. The one that Mr Sondheim considered and turned down, declaring “to make a musical of Groundhog Day would be to gild the lily. It cannot be improved.” Quite. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Matilda, Cambridge Theatre

Tuesday 22 November 2011

Well you don’t have to be Mystic Meg (whatever happened to her?*) to predict the Olivier Award winners at next year’s ceremony.

We’ve dusted off our crystal balls and see the Best Performance in a Supporting Role in a Musical Award forcing either Nigel Harman (Shrek) or Sharon D Clarke (Ghost) to clear a space on the mantlepiece for the trophy.

Now we’re adjusting our bespoke turbans to say the Best Actor in a Musical award is in the bag: one Bertie Carvel for his Miss Trunchbull. Likewise the Best Musical Award, which should go the way of The Evening Standard Awards earlier this week. And who knows, the final musical category could well be filled by the young gals who take the titular role in Matilda The Musical. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Ghost the Musical, Piccadilly Theatre

Thursday 7 July 2011

Love can be a tricky and messy business. Particularly if your mother-in-law-to-be has access to the internet or your bride-to-be has to be (allegedly) intercepted at Nice airport.

Yet these must be but small concerns compared with having a girlfriend who keeps a potter’s wheel in her apartment.

Yes, pot-throwing!

After all these years there are few on-stage experiences that can be deemed firsts for the Whingers but this surely would be one. Forget whether the hit 1990 film Ghost could be successfully adapted for the stage as a musical, what the Whingers were most eagerly anticipating Ghost the Musical  was just how would they handle that iconic scene?

Not that the Whingers have any proficiency to judge her skills at the wheel, Phil hasn’t tossed a pot since school and those results wouldn’t even give Deirdre Barlow’s new-found potting skills a run for their money. But Caissie Levy’s Molly centres her clay very well and gets stuck in sloshing water liberally. The not-so-metaphorical (but endearingly small) phallus she wistfully fingers tells us all we need to know about how much she’s missing her recently deceased boyfriend Sam (Richard Fleeshman), if not why.

Andrew was shaking with dry laughter from the moment her wheel trundled on. Phil came over all nostalgic for the Potter’s Wheel TV interludes*. Expect Grayson Perry to turn up for the official opening night.

But let us crack on before you glaze over. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Matilda, RSC Courtyard Theatre, Stratford upon Avon

Sunday 5 December 2010

The Whingers were brought up on a diet of Enid Blyton and The Water Babies so there were mixed feelings about trailing all the way to Stratford Upon Avon to see the RSC’s new musical Matilda, based on the Roald Dahl story. So mixed, in fact, that Phil ended up not going. Read the rest of this entry »

Deathtrap – The Opening Night

Thursday 9 September 2010

[Note: this is really not worth reading unless you were there. Sorry. It’s mainly an aide memoire to ourselves]

Biggins must have had other plans. But gosh – even the Whingers had other plans. But happily the first preview of Blood and Gifts at the National got cancelled enabling the Whingers to sweep back to the Noel Coward Theatre for the opening night of Deathtrap. Happily Sir Nicholas of Hytner could now also attend and he did so with Samuel Barnett in tow.

And it seemed that everyone else in showbizzland had a gaping hole in their diaries too. Andrew’s alleged prosopagnosia was stretched further than some of the more “enhanced” famous faces on display. And his recognitions skills were not aided by the fact that he doesn’t do much in the way of telly so it was left to Phil to peer through his lorgnettes to fill in the blanks. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Deathtrap, Noël Coward Theatre

Wednesday 25 August 2010

Co-operating, or possibly competing, cross-generational writers. One or the other or both may have murderous intentions towards the other. But who is the cat and who is the mouse? Can writers ever be friends? Or is death only ever a disagreement about prepositions away?

Violent thoughts are rarely very far from the surface when the Whingers are working on a “project” so Deathtrap turned out, yet again, to be a bit close to home one way and another. And what inspiration there was to be found in Rob Howell’s impressive hammer-beam roofed set which is littered with weapons galore – all calling out to be used. At least in our heads. Phil is toying with taking up the crossbow as a hobby. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – La Bête, Comedy Theatre

Thursday 8 July 2010

“The theatrical event of the year” is a phrase that’s rather bandied about willy-nilly these days.

Benedict Nightingale’s quote still lurks mockingly on the publicity for Paint Never Dries. Punters might be forgiven for thinking that it signalled a volte-face in Nightingale’s opinion after his less than flattering 2 star review. It didn’t. The quote actually originates from something he wrote long before he saw it.

But the Whingers can truthfully say that for them La Bête really does fall into the category of one of their most eagerly anticipated theatrical excursions of the year, despite it being written in verse.

Yes verse! You would think that in a post-Fram, post-Misanthrope world, people would have stopped putting on verse plays and moreover that the Whingers would have stopped going to them.

Have their heads been turned by dipping their poetic toes into the Clerihewcular cosmos? Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Living Together (The Norman Conquests) at the Old Vic

Saturday 20 September 2008

Well, let’s look on the bright side (see what a holiday can do for one?).

This was the Whingers’ first theatrical sortie since their expedition to the bush. That’s the African bush if you’re not up to speed (and if not, why not?) not the lauded fringe theatre over a pub half-way to Swindon.

The Old Vic’s new production of Alan Ayckbourn’s Living Together – part of his 70s trilogy of The Norman Conquests – has been directed by the charming and über-prolific Matthew Warchus (who, you may recall, inadvertently gave the Whingers their very first interview).

But the big news is that The Old Vic’s auditorium has been reconfigured and named “The CQS Space”. Apparently that has nothing to do with a TV shopping channel but is connected with something entirely beyond the Whingers’ comprehension: hedge funds and the Hintze Family Charitable Foundation.

So at least the Old Vic’s notorious creaking seats have gone and more bar space has been made available by chucking out some of those useless seats at the back of the stalls. Other theatre owners please take note.

Sounds promising doesn’t it? Read the rest of this entry »