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Friday, 10 May 2013

Merrily We Roll Along the Musical: Theatre Review

Based on the 1934 play of the same name, Merrily We Roll Along originally opened on Broadway in 1981 to a very poor reception. It officially opened on the 16th November 1981 to mostly negative reviews but the score by Sondheim was widely praised. It closed after only 16 performances and 52 previews. An off-West End production opened (with Maria Friedman) in 1992 at the Haymarket Theatre, Leicester and ran for three weeks. A West End production opened at the Donmar Warehouse in 2000 where it won the Olivier Award for Best Musical and it now has returned to the West End, this time transferring to the Harold Pinter Theatre from the Menier Chocolate Factory directed by Maria Friedman. 
Merrily We Roll Along follows three best friends, Franklin Shepard, Mary Flynn and Charles Kringas. It’s a story of friendship and how working with your friends can destroy and strengthen relationships. Throughout the show Franklins love life is one of the main stories, showing his relationships crumble and blossom with Beth and Gussie and of course Mary and Charles. The show actually goes backwards, so the last scene is first and the first scene is the last. This may sound confusing but the way Sondheim has written the show it flows really well and is clearly stated what and where they are in each scene. 

Monday, 17 December 2012

Crazy for You the Musical: Theatre Review

Crazy for you is the Smash hit Gershwin Classic which has recently been revived in the West End after being a part of the 2011 Summer Season at Regents Park the production had transferred to the Novello Theatre where it's been running from the 7thOctober and booking until July 28th2012.
The production oases the classic Broadway quality that we all secretly love in a musical! It's one of those timeless musicals that will have you humming when you leave the theatre.
The musical is brought to life by using a Mamma Mia style set that twists and turns to transform each and every location, from Broadway to Nevada the set fits perfectly. The story line had all the qualities of the classic Broadway shows we love but I do feel it was a tad loose and could do with tightening up in some places. The characters seemed very unfinished and undeveloped, not due to the actors but due to the way the story was written. I can't really imagine why this musical was part of the Regents Park summer season because it doesn't really scream to me as a production that would work in a space like that, but in the Novello Theatre it works brilliantly.
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