I try to be sensible about the amount of shows I see. I have a great team of reviewers who go and review shows for me and editing and publishing all of those, along with the theatre news stories that come up every day, is pretty much a full time job! So going to the theatre every night isn’t always the most sensible thing to do (as more often than not, it involves wine and then the obligatory hang over rendering half the next day useless). I try to limit myself to two or three shows per week, which might still sound like a lot to some of you but its still only a tiny fraction of all the shows I get invited to and would love to see if I could.
This week however is one of those weeks that seems to have crept up on me and when I looked at my upcoming weeks diary I realised, oops I did it again and i’ve managed to schedule a full-on week of staginess! Seven shows in seven days! Now that’s commitment! Here is a run down of my stagey week and why I’m seeing these particular shows.
1. In The Bar Of A Tokyo Hotel
One of the best plays I’ve ever seen was a production of Tennessee Williams Vieux Carre at the Kings Head Theatre (which I called ‘the single most enthralling piece of theatre I have ever seen’). The shows director, Robert Chevara, is now back with a production of the rarely performed Tennessee Williams play In The Bar of a Tokyo Hotel which Williams himself said wasn’t a particularly good play that he had written. However, given the wonderful production of this director’s previous play, I’m very excited to be going to see what he has done with this piece!
2. Sunset Boulevard (again)
Ok, ok, yes I did go to see this show last week but it was so good that I’m going back for a second helping this week! Glenn Close may not be as good as she probably was twenty years ago but this production is stunning and it would be a sin to not go and see it more than once whilst its on its short London run. Seeing Michael Xavier wearing nothing but a pair of swimming drinks at the start of act 2 is just a bonus and definitely not the main reason I am going back! I’m hoping the West End will see the return of Sunset Boulevard for a longer stint very soon!
3. Guys and Dolls
I didn’t manage to catch this at the Savoy Theatre recently and so I’m excited to be going to see it at its new home the Phoenix Theatre. I’ve actually only ever seen one am-dram production of this show before and so I’m excited to see what a full-scale production will look like.
4. War of the Worlds
Another one that I didn’t manage to see on press night is War of the Worlds so thanks to £15 front row tickets I’m getting the chance to still check it out before its run ends. Yes, the majority of people have said how terrible it is but there is something special about having the chance to see he man who wrote this legendary music, perform it live on stage and so I’m going to keep an open mind. I usually end up loving the shows that everyone else hates and so i’ll probably come out thinking it was amazing!
5. Circa (plus filming a lesson in acrobatics with the cast!)
Circa is an acrobatics show that is opening the season at this years Udderbelly Festival on the Southbank. They have invited me along this weekend to learn a few acrobatic tricks and so I’m going to bring my camera so I can catch on film any major accident in which I will need to claim on my insurance for. Hopefully that won’t happen and I’ll just be able to make a fun little video for you to enjoy!
6. Mrs Henderson Presents
The reoccurring theme of this week seems to be going to see the shows that I’ve not yet had a chance to go and see before for one reason or another. Mrs Henderson Presents is one of those shows and I’m excited to see the cast in all their glory!
7. Sister Mary’s Big Sunday Show
Sister Mary McArthur is the alter-ego of my dear friend Tim McArthur. Sister Mary’s big Sunday variety show at the Cockpit Theatre is always a hoot and this weekend she will be joined by my favourite London girl group, The Four Femmes on the Thames who last weekend won the Musical Comedy Awards!