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Friday, 30 August 2019

REVIEW: Cabaret at the Churchill Theatre, Bromley


To say this production of Cabaret doesn’t shy away from the darkness of the era in which it is set is an understatement. It positively embraces it. In doing so the awful rise of the Nazis is made more real and the resonances with our 21stcentury world more powerful.

Rufus Norris’s direction sets out to unsettle us. Despite the jolly banjos and honky-tonk piano in the band playing Kander and Ebb’s oh-so accessible tunes, the setting in a Berlin ‘Kabaret’, the Kit Kat Club, is unnerving from the start. John Partridge as Emcee establishes the tone as he welcomes us, peering eerily from an out-sized camera iris (a reference to I Am a Camera, the play on which the show is based). Throughout he gives a hugely committed performance, becoming more weird and perverse with each number. Like the stories about frogs gradually boiled to death by slowly heating water, we too are gradually seduced by the apparent glamour and sparkle of the entertainment he presents for us, only too late realising the awful truth about the story we are being told.

Oblivious to what’s going on around her is Sally Bowles. She blithely ignores the news and the evidence of her own eyes, simply seeing the Kit Kat club where she performs as a vehicle for her own talents. Played by Kara Lily Hayworth, we see Sally grow through her songs. Her multi-layered interpretation shows us Sally Bowles as performer, as na├»ve, as vulnerable and, in the title number towards the end of the show, as awakening to what the world is really like.
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Tuesday, 9 October 2018

THEN AND NOW: Starlight Express


Starlight Express broke down all the barriers when it opened in the West End in 1984, putting things on stage that had never been done before. After countless productions around the World, its now a household name and instantly recognisable across the globe. Its holds the World record for being one of the longest running sit down productions in the World after the Bochum production celebrated its 30th Birthday this year. The thing that we found super cool about this show is how its evolved through the years, different productions have some completely different designs and its really interesting to see how its altered through time. Productions that are included here include the original West End run, the 1992 revamp of the show, UK tours and the Bochum production, both past companies and the current revamped version made especially for the 30th year. Take a look and share your favourite moments of the show with us on Twitter! @PocketSizeBlog #PocketThenNow  

Rusty 




Ray Shell (1984), Paul Baker (1994), James Gillan (2004), Kevin Kohler (2014) & Blake P Anderson (2018)

Pearl





Stephanie Lawrence (1984), Cheryl McAvoy (1998), Amanda Coutts (2012), Trina Hill (2014) & Georgina Hagen (2018)
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Monday, 18 February 2013

A Chorus Line the Musical: Theatre Review


Set on Broadway in 1975, A Chorus Line is a musical about dancers who are auditioning for a Broadway show. The original production opened off-Broadway in 1975 and transferred onto Broadway in the same year due to the production having a sell out run and the show also won 10 out of 12 Tony Award nominations. The show ran for 6,137 performances and closed in 1990. A West End production of the show opened in 1976, in the same year U.S and International tours started. Many international productions opened and a film adaptation was released in 1985. A Broadway revival opened in 2006 and closed after running for just under two years, this production recently transferred to the West End marking the shows first ever West End revival. The production is being dedicated to composer Marvin Hamlisch who died last year. 
The is set in an empty Broadway Theatre where an audition is to take place, it follows 17 veteran dancers who are looking for one last job before it’s too late for them to dance anymore. Marvin Hamlisch and Edward Kleban’s score has to be Broadway at its best; each and every song is catchy. When you walk out the theatre each person is humming a different tune! One thing they manage to do, along with the help of James Kirkwood and Nicholas Dante’s book, is create 17 characters that all get an individual story making the audience create a wonderful connection with every single cast member. This is truly an ensemble piece and I’m pretty sure there isn’t anything else out there like this. 
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