Hymn to Love: Homage to Piaf

York Theatre Royal and Theatre by the Lake present Hymn to Love, a loving ode to Edith Piaf’s life and later years framed as the rehearsal for her final concert. Songs are interspersed with fond and poignant memories retold by Piaf (Elizabeth Mansfield) to her pianist (Patrick Bridgman); “silent only in word”. Continue reading

We Are The Daughters Of The Dystopia You Failed To Unwrite: LEGACY at York Theatre Royal

A community ensemble cast aged 16-19 and over 65 are brought together in York Theatre Royal’s first intergenerational project; a dystopian devised piece holding up a two-way mirror to the ways in which we apply technology. Continue reading

In at the Deep End: Metta Theatre presents Little Mermaid

Poppy Burton-Morgan’s new musical version of this popular Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale brings a haunting undercurrent to meet an uplifting overall message. Riverdale meets Alice In Wonderland in the soul-stirring music by Matt Devereaux and stunning design by William Reynolds. Vibrant neon purples and reds provide a vivacious backdrop for Loren Elstein’s more domestic costumes that evoke 1950s synchronised swimmers, complete with floral caps. Continue reading

The Cost of Truth: LIFT presents MINEFIELD

When writing reviews, you’re encouraged to keep your personal context at bay – no one needs to hear about your own history with pantomime or Shakespeare and how it skews your view of a production. However, LIFT’s incredible, raw production is all about the specifics of individual experience being tilled to form a whole truth, and its value is in the personal detail. Continue reading

Brighton Rock: A Lexis for Damaged Hope

It is usually easy to impose your own zeitgeist onto a piece of live theatre, because there is so much ambiguity – so many variables for each viewer to interpret however they wish. It is a struggle to forage the attraction of adapting Graham Greene’s noir thriller, which now seems largely irrelevant, but Bryony Lavery is enough of a draw to intrigue those who have or haven’t read the original novel. Continue reading

Grandad’s Island: From beloved bedtime story to theatrical treasure

Benji Davies’ charming picture book is a firm favourite at bedtime in our house, so when I saw there was to be a theatrical adaptation I was both excited and intrigued. Continue reading

Yorkshire Scandals: class struggles across time

Mark France, Annabel Lee, Anna Rose James and Claire Morley in The Taskers' Trials. (Photo by Michael J Oakes)

Theatre companies Re:Verse and Wildgoose shed light on the desperate difficulties and troubled dynamics of two families from different times in their true crime double bill, Yorkshire Scandals. Continue reading