Posts Tagged ‘Young Vic’

Review – Death of a Salesman, Young Vic

Monday 3 June 2019

In which we get to see Meghan Markle’s father’s Willy.

Before we get into trouble we should elucidate. This is Arthur Millers’ 1949 Death of a Salesman with Wendell Pierce giving us his Willy Loman. It was he who played Robert Zane, father of the character played by the then Ms Markle in Suits. Has anyone actually seen Suits? Does anyone know anyone who has actually seen it?* Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Inheritance, Young Vic

Thursday 19 April 2018

What can we say about The Inheritance that you might not have already heard?

That the publicity on the tin calls it a “hilarious and profound heartbreaker”.  We are unable to disagree with that even if the contents are in two parts and spread over 7 hours. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Yerma, Young Vic

Thursday 24 August 2017

We’re very late to the Yerma table. It wowed the critics last year, won Billie Piper a slew of awards including the Big One and now returns intactus to the Young Vic for a brief sold out run with only a week to go.

So if you’ve not see it yet and don’t have a ticket you probably don’t want us to tell you it lives up to the accolades. And you probably don’t want us to tell you that Andrew emerged at the end fluttering his fan saying he couldn’t think of anything wrong with it and that it was possibly the best thing he’d seen since Jerusalem. Phil found his enthusiasm more shocking than the play’s ending. Had Andrew not noticed it was performed on a traverse stage and completely forgotten about 42nd Street? Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Once in a Lifetime, Young Vic

Friday 2 December 2016

oial_326If you’re waiting for a review of Nice Fish you’ll have a jolly long wait. Phil was away and sold his tickets to Andrew (What? Did you expect Phil to give them away?) who went with Katy. Both were underwhelmed. The best he could say about it was it was 90 minutes with no interval though even that was too much for people behind him who departed before the end. Bullet dodged.

But, with a busy theatre period ahead (5 shows in 9 days, and Andrew coming along to all but one) what were the chances of being entertained for the second of them, Once in a Lifetime, after the charms of She Loves Me ? Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Trial, Young Vic

Wednesday 24 June 2015

photo-1Oh for a fondue set and a cuddly toy…

And on the conveyor belt tonight; a television set, a gramophone, a lifetime’s supply of yellow stationery, an animal print duvet, 3 ceramic Alsatian dog ornaments with matching standard lamp, a John Pasche/Rolling Stones lampshade, a set of photographs of celebrity criminals, 3 toilets, and a generously busy cast of 17 actors including Rory Kinnear, Siân Thomas, Sarah Crowden, Kate O’Flynn and the lovely Will from W1A.

For this is Franz Kafka‘s The Trial reinvented by Nick Gill (adapting) and Richard Jones (directing) as The Generation Game with a little bit of Through the Keyhole thrown in for good measure. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Scottsboro Boys, Young Vic

Tuesday 19 November 2013

Phil is constantly surprised by life.

After experiencing his first earthquake and returning to his hotel room, he ran a forensic check on his bathroom’s grouting. How, when the whole building was quivering around him, did it survive intact without even the hint of a hairline crack? It wasn’t even flexible grouting. How do they do that?

And he shouldn’t really be surprised by the musicalisation of grim real-life events anymore but he is. After all he suffered Jean Seberg (which, if he remembers correctly  – when he saw it – opened with the actress’s body discovered in the boot of a car after her suicide and also contained the jaw-dropping moment of a chorus line of tap dancing psychiatrists) then there was the equally memorable Too Close to the Sun (the last 24 hours in the life of Earnest Hemingway before he blew his brain out). The surprise in The Scottsboro Boys, concerning nine black teenage boys, falsely accused of rape in the Alabama of 1931, isn’t so much that the event was turned into a musical, but that – unlike those others – it actually works. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Bingo, Young Vic

Wednesday 22 February 2012

Picture this. The Whingers at the Young Vic, seated between two fat ladies (88), forcing them to squeeze their legs (11) tightly together before getting their eyes down for Bingo.

Partick Stewart stars; what else could it be but a full house? Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Government Inspector, Young Vic

Monday 11 July 2011

Yet more arts cuts!

As this man has pointed out, there is a new theatrical trend in town –  culling of definite article.

first victim was Seagull at Arcola) and now  Young Vic wades in with Government Inspector.

It’s a trend that rather suits us as it involves less typing and we hereby embrace it wholeheartedly. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Beauty Queen of Leenane, Young Vic

Wednesday 21 July 2010

Picture it. Two very troubled people, interdependent and inseparable due to circumstance; one is very old, extremely crotchety and makes the other one’s life hell.

But how much is the careworn younger one culpable for the older person’s distress? What is behind this ghastly symbiotic relationship of psychological cruelty. Why can’t they live together? Why daren’t they exist apart.

Goodness! Who’d have thought there’d be so many parallels between the characters in Martin McDonagh‘s* exceedingly black comedy The Beauty Queen of Leenane (newly revived at the Young Vic) and the Whingers’ own peculiar arrangement. The only immediate difference being that the Whingers, thankfully, were never umbilically connected.

Oh, and that Phil doesn’t eat Complan – but that can only be a matter of time. Read the rest of this entry »

In which the Whingers’ hopes of more allocated seating are cruelly dashed

Friday 9 April 2010

It was – for a brief moment – as though all the Whingers’ birthdays had come at once (which – when you take into account how many birthdays Phil has had – is quite an astonishing thing).

The posters would have been even wronger than they already are. “The Theatrical Event of the Year” would hot have been Love Never Dies. Nor would it even have been the theatrical event getting the most attention during the period January-June 2010.*

No. Someone told us that they had overheard little bird telling someone else that the Young Vic theatre was planning to introduce allocated seating for its next season. Imagine that! Seats with letters and numbers on them so that you know where you are sitting, you can sit with the friends you have gone to the theatre with and you don’t have to queue in the street.

If it didn’t sound so Richard Littlejohn we would have called it a victory for common sense. The Menier Chocolate Factory is a much more civilised place since it put numbers on its seats and we were hoping that the Domino Theory might be at work and we were looking forward to being able to book at the Young Vic in future without that all-pervasive feeling of dread about the experience of actually going there.

But it seems that the Domino Theory no more applies to allocated seating than it did to Communism. For  Andrew phoned the press office who patiently explained that, “This topic is always on the table.  No change as far as I’m aware.”

So there we are. Back to earth with a bump.

Don’t know why we mentioned it really.


*As Mark Shenton explains:

I recently pointed out here how the ads for Love Never Dies are proudly trumpeting that Benedict Nightingale of The Times has called the show “the theatrical event of the year”, though the phrase was actually nowhere in his two-star review. But yesterday I found it lurking in a preview feature of 2010 Benedict filed back on January 1: “There is no doubting which theatrical event will get the most attention in 2010, or at least in the first half of a year that, like a good play, is yet to reveal all of its secrets. That’s Andrew Lloyd Webber’s follow-up to The Phantom of the Opera….”

So, its not, in fact, so much the theatrical event of the year, as the theatrical event that will get the most attention, a different thing entirely, in 2010, or at least in the first half of the year — a double qualification!

Review – Annie Get Your Gun, Young Vic

Wednesday 7 October 2009

agyg_poster_1518Roll up! Roll up! See Annie Oakley, the best little sharpshooter in the west!

Roll up! Roll up! See possibly the most misguided, misfiring musical revival to go off half cock EVER.

Roll up! Roll up! Begin to forget what showbusiness is, never mind whether or not any other business might bear some resemblance to it. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Kursk, Young Vic

Wednesday 24 June 2009

dd-jun4-kurskIt seemed particularly perverse of Andrew to come hot foot (or, rather, frozen foot but that’s enough of Andrew’s unsavoury medical details) from his long-suffering podiatrist to the Young Vic last night

The Whingers aren’t normally keen on promenade performances, famously preferring the comfort and reliability of numbered seats and a resting place for their luxuriant derrières.

But Sound&Fury‘s Kursk in collaboration with Bryony “More Light” Lavery had come highly recommended and so go they had to even though (or especially though from Phil’s viewpoint) it meant Andrew was going to have to suffer for his art. For the interventions of the chiropodist had come on the heels of a traumatic gardening mishap only days before in which Andrew’s attempts to hang some gazebo lights ended in tragedy and although he didn’t mention it, Phil did feel that Andrew’s cuts and bruises were probably some divine retribution for someone without a gazebo above their station. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – King Lear with Pete Postlethwaite, Young Vic

Tuesday 3 March 2009


Phil was having one of his cross days:

“Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! rage! blow!
You cataracts and hurricanoes, spout
Till you have drench’d our steeples, drown’d the cocks!
You sulphurous and thought-executing fires,
Vaunt-couriers to oak-cleaving thunderbolts,
Singe my white head! And thou, all-shaking thunder,
Smite flat the thick rotundity o’ the world!
Crack nature’s moulds, an germens spill at once,
That make ingrateful man,” said Phil.

“Look, it’s just a drop of rain; it’s hardly spitting,” protested Andrew.

“And besides I’ve got a brolly.

“Do you want to go and see King Lear at the Young Vic or not,” asked Andrew, his patience wearing somewhat thin.

The answer was clearly going to be “not” and so it was that Phil passed up on the opportunity to witness what promised to be one of the most innovative productions of a William Shakespeare play since the Pie Crust Players had a stab at Hamlet under the direction of Julie Walters in the classic Victoria Wood sketch (sadly and strangely not on YouTube). Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Good Soul of Szechuan with Jane Horrocks, Young Vic

Tuesday 13 May 2008

Picture it. A school in some forgotten corner of rural England many, many years ago.

A fresh-faced, young boy takes his first tentative steps into the spotlight. A green one, as it happens.

He is thrilled. He is wearing a dress. He is a god.

To be specific, he is Third God (there is no fourth) in Bertolt Brecht’s The Good Soul of Szechuan.

That young boy – hard as it is to picture looking at him now – was Phil. Read the rest of this entry »