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Wednesday, 21 September 2022

REVIEW: The Color Purple at the Birmingham Hippodrome


After a praised revival by the Leicester Curve in 2019, The Colour Purple has returned post-pandemic, co-produced with the Birmingham Hippodrome. Finally, the UK is being blessed with a production that hits a tidal wave of raw human emotion and celebrates the beauty and strength of female empowerment.

As I enter the theatre, a buzz of excitement fills each level as the audience takes their seat. A diverse variety of theatre-goers assemble as the pre-show chatter commences; an assortment of comments about the show, fans of the novel, film, musical and groups of individuals who have no idea what to expect.
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Thursday, 18 February 2021

REVIEW: The Color Purple at the Leicester Curve (Online)


After the success of the Curve's stream of Sunset Boulevard that successfully used the venue as the setting for the Hollywood studios-based story, I was excited to see how they adjusted their 2019 production of the Colour Purple in a socially distanced version for a streamed audience. Indeed, the production hit the headlines for the wrong reasons with an employment tribunal over one cast member which was rejected in the same week as the stream premiered.

Perhaps because I was less familiar with Alice Walker's 1983 book or the musical version of the story with music by Brenda Russell, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray or perhaps because of difficulties getting the stream to run smoothly from the start I found it hard to get into the show. However around two-thirds of the way through the first half, it suddenly burst into life and soared into a powerful uplifting and joyous second half and finale.  

It is a challenging story dealing with domestic violence, incest, racism and sexism in Tennessee over about forty years from 1920 to 1945 and turns the epistolary book into an episodic telling of Celie's life from abused child suffering at the hands of her father Alphonso and her husband Mr Albert to a successful businesswoman. Only one early song "Big Dog" with Mister and his field hands hints at the better songs to come with the rest being generally short snatches of songs that never get going.
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Sunday, 25 August 2019

Hardest Female roles in Musical Theatre


Being a musical theatre performer is not easy in the slightest; from the auditions to getting a job, to the constant rehearsals and finally recreating an incredible performance to a paying audience night after night. This is even before you look at some of the challenges some roles might have within them; either emotionally, physically or vocally. Here at Pocket we have teamed up with our friends at LondonBoxOffice.co.uk and we've put together a list of roles we think are among some of the hardest. And don't just take our word for it, we've had help from some of our performer friends who have played the roles to give you an insight to what it was like from their perspective. 

There are so many more that could be on this list so if we've missed any, tweet us what you think should be on it! @PocketSizeBlog
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Thursday, 27 December 2018

Pocket Size Theatre | Whats opening in 2019


There's a lot of things going on next year in the world of theatre; revivals of much loved shows, Broadway transfers, UK transfers, returns of shows previously in London, new writing and so much more! So here's our guide to the theatrical highlights of 2019! Get your diaries out... 

Aspects of Love | Southwark Playhouse | 7th January 



Six the Musical | Arts Theatre | Opens 16th January



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