Monday, 15 September 2008

UPDATE: Too Much Theatre

It’s finally happened: the RZ’s theatre-going habit has outstripped his ability to keep the site updated in a timely manner. Mind you, going to the theatre at night has been functioning as a perk for focusing on work during the day, namely the work of getting his behemoth of a master’s thesis written. As such, the RZ has seen the following shows but will not be writing full reviews on them:

Well @ Trafalgar 2: It’s funny, and raises some interesting questions, but also suffers from “hate all the characters” syndrome. By the last 20 minutes the RZ was hoping that the main character would go McDonagh on someone’s arse.

Our House @ New Wimbledon (Now touring somewhere else): How the original production won the Olivier is beyond the RZ’s comprehension - it must have been a painfully dry year. Not having been in the UK when Madness were the shit, the only thing keeping him from leaving this shitty production at the interval was the thought of spending two hours on the train to and from Wimbledon for an hour of theatre. Not that it was all bad - the choreography was great, the songs would be fun to play DDR to, and the cast tried their best - but the sound design was poor (there were lyrics?) and the RZ facepalmed repeatedly during the performance, the plot of which was as such: do the right thing and wind up an unemployed convict, do the wrong thing and wind up successful only to murder your mum by accident.

The Pretender Agenda @ New Players: An office full of scandal makes for a funny play, but it needed another workshop: the first scene could have been cut entirely though the play was overall entertaining and a good reminder of why you should always be nice to your temps. The cast was loaded with TV stars the RZ didn’t recognise (that all gave quality performances either way), but he suspects that only 10% of the audience (somewhere in the 50-75 person range) was NOT comped the night he went - most of the people in the stalls knew the author who was also in attendance.

Eurobeat @ Novello: Went with a friend who loves the trash factor of Eurovision this time. No surprise, she loved it. No surprise, Poland won. The RZ has shilled for this enough by now and doesn’t even work for the damn show.

Small Craft Warnings @ Arcola 1: Typical Tennessee Williams with the added bonus of an unrehearsed understudy coming to the rescue of a mostly solid cast (who all slipped accents a few times). Great speeches, but a bit of a mess. This was the RZ’s first time at the Arcola and he’s fallen in love with the space, not to mention the neighbourhood’s restaurants.

The Harder They Come @ Playhouse: The RZ popped in for the closing. Nothing particularly special or different, no speeches at the end.

On the RZ’s agenda for this week is a preview of Come Dancing at Stratford East and a lot of continued writing work along with the Osamu Tezuka festival at the Barbican (where he will probably hide in the back row of the cinema with his computer continuing to make last minute revisions).

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