Posts Tagged ‘musicals’

Review – Ruthie Henshall Sounds of Hollywood, Royal Festival Hall

Monday 1 November 2010

“Julie Andrews was my inspiration,” gushed Ruthie Henshall as she steeled herself to wrestle another semi-anecdote to the ground before it could emit a punchline.

In the sense of doing a show in which you leave most of the performing to other people?

Yes. Read the rest of this entry »

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Review – Hello, Dolly! at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre

Tuesday 11 August 2009

Hello Dolly Regents Park Open Air Theatre posterWith the predicted barbecue summer on and off faster than a Hemingway musical it looked as if the Whingers’ 2009 visit to Regent’s Park might end up as a reprise of last year’s somewhat waterlogged outing.

But with the sudden return of good weather over the weekend the Whingers had been optimistically talking again of sizzling their sausages. It seemed that the plastic ponchos which stood them in such good stead at last year’s delightful Gigi might remain packed away and that they would be able to appreciate Jerry Herman‘s Hello, Dolly! by putting on their sunny day clothes.

But Andrew – thrilled by the meticulous punctuation of the title – had been impatiently tapping his barometer and keeping a beady eye on the forecast and in his practised Cassandra voice was warning that  things weren’t looking too good for Dolly‘s press night (Yes, press night! How grand is that? See what you can achieve when one of you dons a prosthetic Ian Shuttleworth suit and the other simply claims to be new boy Henry Hitchings? The people at the press desk didn’t suspect a thing).

But we digress. Read the rest of this entry »

Lambeth Country Show: flower show report vol 1.

Sunday 19 July 2009

Wicked flower arrangement Lambeth Country ShowAs promised the Whingers bring you an update from the Lambeth Country Show which takes place this weekend in Brockwell Park.

The big excitement of this year for theatre lovers and tolerators is the West End Musical themed class in the Lambeth Horticultural Society’s flower show.

Look away now if you don’t want to know who won. Otherwise: Read the rest of this entry »

Review: Maria Friedman and the Great British Songbook, Shaw Theatre

Saturday 7 February 2009

maria-friedmanWell, not really a review, more a call to action. This was supposed to be a night off for Andrew but seeing Maria Friedman and the Great British Songbook at the Shaw Theatre seemed like as good a way as any of  winding down after a week spent mostly listening to Christian Bale remixes.

The show is supposed to be a response to the ubiquitous Great American Songbook but does Britain really have one? Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Imagine This The Musical! New London Theatre

Thursday 13 November 2008

Imagine This

Whatever next? Abu Ghraib the Musical!? Guantánamo the Musical!?

Any new musical is a tremendous risk but to stage one set in 1942 about the occupants of the Jewish Ghetto in Warsaw staging a show about Masada (where a siege by troops of the Roman Empire in AD 73 led to the mass suicide of Jewish rebels who preferred death to surrender) seems like, well, suicide.

Choose the same venue that housed the mega-flop Gone With the Wind – The Musical! and you might as well be go round backstage shouting “Macbeth” at every Tom, Dick and Manny.

Then there is the misfortune of staging it at a time when “the R word” is tightening belts.

And finally you have to take into account that this is, after all, Whingertown and the Whingers are curiously resistant to new musicals (all the good musicals having already been written in our humble opinion). Read the rest of this entry »

Review – A Swell Party, Cadogan Hall

Sunday 10 August 2008

Showtunes fans only need read on… Nothing for anyone else here. Move along now…

The problem with owning an Ethel Merman’s Greatest Hits CD is that whenever you hear anyone else sing “Throwing a Ball Tonight” or “Make It Another Old Fashioned Please” you just think, “That’s not right”.

That was the main lesson taken away from last night’s A Swell Party at the Cadogan Hall. Of course, you can’t un-buy a CD and there is no known medical intervention which can remove Merman memories from the brain so think carefully before you purchase such a thing. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – David McAlmont at the Clore Ballroom, Royal Festival Hall

Saturday 26 July 2008

Well, not a review really. More of a “heads up”.

The Whingers are almost certainly not going to see The Wizard of Oz at the Royal Festival Hall because it isn’t Christmas. Even the lure of the legendary Roy Hudd was not quite enough to overcome their seasonal prejudices.

Still, the Royal Festival Hall has a series of free Dorothy-related events running over the summer and if last night you missed David McAlmont singing the Harold Arlen songbook in the Clore Ballroom, make sure you catch it tonight (Saturday) at 6pm.

He’s accompanied by the fantastic Natasha Panas on the piano and together they deliver a top class appraisal of classics such as “Ac-cent-tchu-ate the Positive”, “Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead”, “One for My Baby (and One More for the Road)”, “Over the Rainbow” and “The Man That Got Away”.

Unmissable stuff for lovers of show tunes and the great American songbook.

David McAlmont and Natasha Panas

David McAlmont and Natasha Panas

Here’s McAlmont at his very campest:

Review – Gone With The Wind – The Musical! (Act 1) at the New London Theatre

Thursday 10 April 2008

The London Marathon arrived a few days early for the Whingers. Standing in freezing weather watching people run past dressed as rhinos would have been a doddle compared to this.

Thankfully the Whingers and their plus-eight (remember that – it is important later) had come prepared: thermos flasks of coffee, energy drinks, sports chocolate, pillows and hot water bottles were all smuggled into the auditorium. Beneath his smart evening-wear Andrew was sporting a natty and almost fresh set of his favourite jim-jams.

Most shockingly of all, Phil had broken his “no caffeine after 5pm” rule (one of the conditions of his ASBO) in a determined effort to make it through to the very end of the four-hour (but getting shorter) marathon that is a preview of Gone With The Wind – The Musical!

The big question on everyone’s lips, of course, was: “How can they possibly squeeze the thousand-odd pages of Margaret Mitchell’s epic novel into “just” four hours? The answer is simple… Read the rest of this entry »