Posts Tagged ‘Noel Coward Theatre’

Review – All About Eve, Noel Coward Theatre

Friday 8 March 2019

There’s a cheeky story about the making of the 195O film classic All About Eve. Phil’s tried to find it on t’internet but all he could come up with was this 14 bumpy facts about All About Eve page. Worth-reading though.

Anyhoo he’ll deliver the story from his rather shaky memory as best he can. George Sanders (Addison deWitt in the film) was married to Zsa Zsa Gabor at the time and his newish wife was constantly turning up on the San Francisco film set to check up on him (well he was filming with Marilyn Monroe) and wanting Sanders to take her out shopping, to which the film’s writer/director Joseph L. Mankiewicz allegedly snapped “Fuck off Zsa Zsa we’re trying to make a movie here”. We’d love to believe it’s true. Read the rest of this entry »

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Review – Mrs Henderson Presents, Noel Coward Theatre

Tuesday 16 February 2016

MHP_3Girls-New-simp-NM-40mb-432x432-1You wait for a popular but distinctly underwhelming noughties British film starring a Dame of the British Empire featuring women posing naked to raise a bit of cash to be turned into a stage musical and then you get a big bouncy pair of them. What are the chances?

Girls, which has for some inexplicable reason has dropped the identifying word Calendar from its title is creeping closer to London. For the meantime we will have to put up with content ourselves with Mrs Henderson Presents based on the 2005 Judi Dench film. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Photograph 51 with Nicole Kidman, Noel Coward Theatre

Wednesday 9 September 2015

5248-1440598883-photo51encore600x900aug15The first and last time Nicole Kidman appeared on a West End stage one critic got himself into a right old tizzy, probably tenting in his stalls seat before breathlessly describing her as “Pure theatrical Viagra“.

Phil saw that play, The Blue Room, in preview and was met by a US TV crew from Entertainment Tonight as he exited the Donmar wanting to know how she’d acquitted herself. Of course, what they really wanted to know was intimate details of her nude scene, Phil was so discreet in his utterances they no doubt left the footage on the cutting room floor.

17 years on, would Kidman’s appearance in Photograph 51 prove to be theatrical Viagra or theatrical bromide? Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Impossible, Noel Coward Theatre

Tuesday 25 August 2015

What’s impossible?impossible-launch275a

Andrew saying. “There’s a new play by Caryl Churchill play we must go!” or “If only Pinter had written just one more play before he died” or maybe Phil saying “I really liked that new show, the one with the park benches, balloons and shopping trolleys”.

Getting Andrew and Phil to watch a magic show is much more likely. Magic is the new rock and roll apparently, but we’ve known that for some time. Impossible fills a gap at the Noel Coward theatre until ex Mrs Mission Impossible star (see what we did there?) arrives in Photograph 51. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Shakespeare in Love, Noel Coward Theatre

Thursday 10 July 2014

-31148What’s Shakespeare in Love about then?

Well, it’s about 3 hours.

We’ve probably used that ‘gag’ before, but since the West End is hooked on recycling movies and musical back catalogues we feel moved to join in with some gentle regurgitation too.

SIL, should you not know, was a popular and reasonably entertaining film that inexplicably went on to win 7 Academy Awards (you remember, Dame Judi won the Best Supporting Actress statuette for her 8 minutes of screen time as Queen E 1) and is delivered extravagantly to the Noel Coward in both production values and running time. The only brevity here comes in the form of a ceruse-faced Anna Carteret who drifts around oozing regality in the Dame J role in similarly and frustratingly brief appearances. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Full Monty, Noel Coward Theatre

Saturday 1 March 2014

There’s a branch of Blockbusters that’s still open and it’s called the West End.

We’ve already got (or recently had), to name but a few, Dirty Dancing, The Lion King, Strangers on a Train, The Bodyguard, Billy Elliot, Once, From Here to Eternity, and The Commitments and with Fatal Attraction, Back to the Future, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, and Let the Right One In, yet to come. Adaptations of popular films seem to be the only way to secure an audience.

We were at the opening night of The Full Monty so you’d expect the audience to be wildly enthusiastic, the cast and people behind the show have their chums in after all. But one woman in a stage side box got up and danced along, not just at the obligatory standing ovation curtain call, but during the show. Perhaps she was trying to attract the eye of one of the many celebrities present. But which one? Richard Wilson? Sir Derek Jacobi? Mark Almond? Biggins? Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Henry V, Noel Coward Theatre

Thursday 28 November 2013

-30539As we rush into winter, the ‘C’ word is on everyone’s lips. Yes, tis the season when The Consumptives return to the theatre.

Turn off your mobile phone, but make sure you bring your cough along and share it with your fellow audience members throughout the play.

But it wasn’t just conspicuous consumption that provided substantial distractions throughout Henry V, the last of Michael Grandage‘s 5 play season at the Noel Coward Theatre; there was also the case of Jude Law‘s trousers. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Noël Coward Theatre

Friday 13 September 2013

3496-amidsummernightsdreamticketsIn which David Walliams offers us his Bottom and his ass.

The penultimate play in the Michael Grandage season, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, comes in niftily, at this early preview, at just over 2 and a quarter hours (including interval). Impressive really since Walliams’ deliberately overdone play-within-a-play death scene seemed to take up almost half of Act 2. Milking it was not the word. The milk was turning to cheese with thick slices of Frankie Howard ham on the side and, depending on your take on Walliams, also very funny. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Cripple of Inishmaan, Noel Coward Theatre

Friday 21 June 2013

posterIf the Whingers had £50 million or so in the bank they would be taking life easy.

When not idling the hours away in a most dilatory of fashions, they would be jetting off to the far-flung corners of their bucket lists. They would be breaking their principles by occupying Premium Seats in the theatre before indulging in post-show discussions eating fancy chow and drinking fancy wine.

But then the Whingers are not 23 any more than they are not Daniel Radcliffe whose post-Potter life has already seen him throwing himself into the deep end of a stage career by throwing off his clothes on both sides of the Atlantic, taking on the lead in a Broadway musical and now tackling an Irish accent whilst surrounded by bona fide Irish actors. No one can accuse him of ducking a challenge. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Peter and Alice, Noel Coward Theatre

Thursday 28 March 2013

PETER AND ALICE 560x205With the Whingers barely recovered from seeing Britain’s Second Most Inspirational Woman, Helen Mirren pass herself off as a 25-year-old QEII in The Audience we are now presented with Britain’s Most Inspirational Woman, Judi Dench playing Alice Liddell Hargreaves as a 10-year-old in John Logan’s Peter and Alice. Yikes!

Both Dame-led fantasies are selling out nightly. One can only suppose that a smart producer has spotted this latest theatrical trend and is currently scrabbling round for a script that will entice Dame Maggie Smith to don a baby grow. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Privates on Parade, Noel Coward Theatre

Tuesday 18 December 2012

images-1Yet another production featuring a gay man swishing around the stage. We’ve whinged about the outbreak which started with this went on in that and ended up in Viva Forever! There’s an epidemic in London’s theatreland; the vaccine for theatrical queenitis is presumably in its very early stages of development.

But the big differences in Peter Nichols‘ 1977 Privates on Parade are that (a) camp Captain Terri Dennis’ character is a key and sympathetic central character and (b) he’s utterly, genuinely hilarious. Unlike those other shows the audience are laughing with him and not at him. Well, OK then, we do laugh at him too, but for all the right reasons. 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 – Enron, Royal Court

Friday 16 October 2009

enron10Like Andrew on a weekend break, Enron comes with an absurd amount of baggage: it picked up suitcases full of rave reviews at The Chichester Festival Theatre and hat-boxes full of predictions that it will scoop Best Play in the awards season.

Its West End transfer was announced before the sold-out Royal Court season even opened. Everyone’s talking about it.

But sadly for the Whingers that pesky old Black Watch effect is back. How can anything possibly be as good as all those critics said it was? It just can’t. And so it proved to be with Enron, the story of the energy company that fooled everyone into thinking it was better than it was. Read the rest of this entry »