Posts Tagged ‘Trafalgar Studios’

Review – The Maids, Trafalgar Studios

Friday 26 February 2016

5508-1455097891-themaidssqWarning: May contain petals

If there had been a “switch off your phones” announcement before The Maids Phil might have avoided leaning across Andrew to poke the man next to him who twice turned his on to check what time it was. Pretty annoying. But actually what this show really needed was a stern warning, “DON’T STEAL THE PETALS”.

Phil was investigating one of the thousands of petals that surrounded the stage after the play finished until he was barked at by an over-zealous usher. Of course Phil had no intention of indulging in a little petal-pilfery, he just wanted to know what they were made of. If you’re intending to see this don’t risk chastisement. They’re paper. Never say we don’t do the dirty work for you. Read the rest of this entry »

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Review – The Pride, Trafalgar Studios

Tuesday 27 August 2013

Well, it’s been a quite a while.poster

The Whingers have been busying themselves doing other things. We’ve been enjoying the summer (once it finally arrived) with copious alfresco eating and drinking (obvs) and not really that keen to be sweating it out in the dark in search of amusement.

Andrew took the waters in Lourdes, Phil took to the waters in Spain and found entertainment elsewhere in the brilliant Breaking Bad (he’s just finished off season 4) and is now working on Andrew to check it out. Let’s hope Sonia Friedman finds the time to become addicted too (Andrew thinks she probably has people to watch it for her) and puts one of its cast (Bryan Cranston or Giancarlo Esposito or Aaron Paul?) on the London stage despite the rather bizarre situation of it not yet appearing on proper telly here.

The only theatrical sortie between us was when Phil returned to The Book of Mormon and he’s happy to report that the cast seemed as fresh as daises despite being 6 months into the run.

Yes, we’ve been otherwise engaged and now the thrilling news that we’ve 160 new Barbara Cartland novels to get through suggests our theatre going is likely to become even more intermittent. But before we curl up in a miasma of fluffy romance we found time to wonder why Lord Webber’s new musical has been given such a dull title. Did a team of people come up with Stephen Ward deliberately to avoid what happened last time? Of course we don’t want to suggest that it won’t be anything less than magnificent. But if it isn’t won’t some smart Alec christen it Terminal Ward or Leavin’ Bored?

And thanks for the flood of enquiries as to where we’ve been. All three of them. You know who you are. Thanks for thinking of us.

So it took Alexi Kaye Campbell‘s The Pride to lure us back, despite some dubbing it a ‘gay play’ and performed at the rather unprepossessing Trafalgar Studios. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Hothouse, Trafalgar Studios / This House, National Theatre

Thursday 16 May 2013

hothouseWe are of course far too indolent to check, but this is possibly our first conjoined review.

It’s a time thing really. We’re all behind, but in our defence there are parallels between these plays: both are “house”-titled, have on-stage, set-specific audience seating and are boisterously over-the-top comedic satires set in institutions run by dangerously potty people.

The Hothouse features John Simm, Simon Russell Beale, Indira Varma, John Heffernan, Clive Rowe and Christopher Timothy and the aforementioned chance to be up there with them. You’d be forgiven for assuming Andrew would have been there wouldn’t you? Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Holding the Man, Trafalgar Studios

Friday 7 May 2010

Apparently the quality of  the West End Whingers has declined since we began too eagerly to play the freebies game and have become digested by the machinery.

Well, not to worry, we’re giving up reviewing anyway and going into producing instead. Mind you, it’s not all plain sailing. Andrew’s plans for an all-singing, all-dancing, all-acting multimedia production of Farepak about the UK’s biggest ever corporate collapse of a Christmas club have been shelved following the disappointing early-closure of Enron on Broadway.

So in the meantime it’s back to reviewing. Or procrastinating about reviewing. We’ve been sitting on this since its Tuesday opening which the machinery invited us to attend. The machinery didn’t invite us to the post-show party but we went anyway.

And we still didn’t care too much for the play. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Public Property, Trafalgar Studios

Wednesday 18 November 2009

A person whose life is spent hovering on the edges of the business of show and whose own name occasionally appears on the sides of buses (and who really should know better) recently, and in all seriousness, asked a Whinger “Do you have a PR?”

How we chortled.

The Whingers may be getting a little grand these days (even grander since being invited to the press night of Public Property and grand enough to turn up a day late to it) but they don’t yet have the resources to employ “people”.

If they were able to engage a publicist it certainly wouldn’t be all-round slimeball Larry De Vries, portrayed in Sam Peter Jackson‘s comedy Public Property by the rather comely Nigel Harman. But well-known newsreader Geoffrey Hammond (Robert Daws) has been caught in a compromising position in a car in a lay-by with a 16 year old boy (Steven Webb**). And unlike Gillian Taylforth he wasn’t just relieving his abdominal pain. So Geoffrey really, really needs Larry’s help if he is to have any chance of saving his career. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Mountaintop, Trafalgar Studios

Wednesday 5 August 2009

mountaintop_poster_1680How apt that Theatre 503‘s production of Katori Hall‘s play should get its West End re-staging at the Trafalgar Studios. From the Whingers’ vertiginous perches in Row K of the perilously raked Trafalgar auditorium their view was one that may as well have been from mountaintop.

Phil’s frustration was only exacerbated by the fact that in seat K3 he was just one seat away from being able to boast about having seen the The Mountaintop from the absurdly appropriate K2. As it was he had to content himself with the choice of an ERP software provider, a Flemish girl group or a wind/solar powered charging device, none of which readily lent themselves to a hook on which to hang the review .

It was also VERY hot in the auditorium and two glasses of red wine had already set the Whingers back £11.20, The Mountaintop being a laudable 80 minutes straight through.

So given all the whinging about the temperature, the bar prices and wishing they were closer to this intimate two-hander, it’s a testament to director James Dacre‘s production that he kept the Whingers thoroughly entertained. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Cherry Orchard, Old Vic

Monday 1 June 2009

the bridge projectThe Bridge Project. What’s that all about then?* It’s an unprecedented three-year, transatlantic partnership uniting The Old Vic with Brooklyn Academy of Music, and Neal Street Productions which turns out not to be where Andrew buys his cheese, as he thought, but director Sam Mendes‘ production company (Shrek the Musical etc).

What it really means is we get to see cheese and chalk Simon Russell Beale and Ethan Hawke on stage together Tom Stoppard‘s new adaptation of Ibsen’s The Cherry Orchard (they’re also doing The Winter’s Tale but one unprecedented transatlantic production is enough for the Whingers). Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Last Cigarette, Trafalgar Studios

Wednesday 6 May 2009

the-last-cigaretteFamously the Whingers never indulge in any form of artificial stimulation although there are those who have attached soubriquets to them that might suggest otherwise.

Theatre is really the only nasty habit to which they have ever become addicted. But unlike alcohol, nicotine, illegal substances and caffeine not only does it fall short of the epithet of “stimulant”,  it often fails even to keep the Whingers awake.

But it was fitting that the Whingers dropped in to see The Last Cigarette last night for health had been something of a topic for the day. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Entertaining Mr Sloane, Trafalgar Studios

Wednesday 28 January 2009

entertaining-mr-sloaneAn awful lot was riding on this. Too much. It really wasn’t fair.

There was the disappointing (but now legendary) trip to see Joe Orton‘s Loot at the Tricycle Theatre in December which led the Whingers to wonder whether Orton’s work might have passed its perform-by date.

And then since the last strains of Auld Lang Syne died away the Whingers have endured a miserable January with too much talk of recession and a slew of largely quite terrible trips to the theatre .

So, yes. it was not only the rehabilitation of Orton’s reputation that was at stake: it was nothing less than the Whingers faith in West End theatre that was riding on the new production of Entertaining Mr Sloane at the Trafalgar Studios: their very raison d’être. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Well, Apollo Theatre

Wednesday 7 January 2009

well

With everyone in New Year mode, many thinking about their health and their body (not that anyone is thinking about Andrew’s body) it seemed appropriate that the Whingers’ first outing of 09 should be to Lisa Kron‘s play Well at the Apollo Theatre.

Well, actually Andrew had no idea why the Whingers went to see this. He had a vague recollection that they had concluded quite some time ago – possibly before it had even been written – that it was going to be awful* and that the Whingers were definitely going to give it a wider berth.

Their presence at the Apollo on Monday evening can only be put down to Phil’s determination to see “international screen icon” Sarah Miles on stage. Anyway… Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Fat Pig, Trafalgar Studios

Thursday 22 May 2008

Some things are clearly not meant to be.

The Whingers were fully expecting to be able to review their own West End stage debuts in Fat Pig.

Having missed out on making their Broadway debuts in both Xanadu and the 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee they leapt at the chance to secure on-stage seating at the new Neil LaBute play at the Trafalgar Studios.

Andrew had got himself into a right old tizzy of excitement. He had spent weeks planning his “performance”, trying to pin down the nuances of his character (sadly elusive) and, most importantly, deciding what he should wear to draw most attention to himself. He eschewed Phil’s offer of his favourite fashion item of the moment: a Sarah Jessica Parker style fascinator, instead settling for his old favourite “Ignore Me. I’m Just Reviewing Your Performance” t-shirt.

But their plans were cruelly dashed. Read the rest of this entry »