THEATRE REVIEW: Pigs and Dogs starring Fisayo Akinade, Sharon D. Clarke & Alex Hassell


WHERE: Royal Court

WHEN 20/7 to 30/7

Escaped Alone was Caryl Churchill’s last play at the Royal Court and was memorable not least for its 50-minute run time.

  • Read on for why brevity is the next big thing in theatre

We’ve nothing against short plays and, in fact, find them infinitely preferable when executed well to their bloated and overblown cousins. Welcome, then, at £5 a ticket to Ms Churchill’s latest 10-minute attraction.

It features three of our favourite actors and is the story of the Anti Homosexuality Act Uganda passed in 2014. Post Brexit particularly this runs the risk of deserving criticism for passing judgement on another country’s affairs from the safety of privilege in west London.

However, this works because its quotes (some attributed, some not) also celebrate Africa’s seemingly rich queer tradition.

A serious Alex Hassell (Henry IV parts 1 and 2, Henry V at the Barbican), a playful Fisayo Akinade (Barbarians at the Young Vic) and always imperious Sharon D. Clarke (Ma Rainey at the National) slip easily between accents in what some might call slam poetry.

Author Churchill makes her point and while we’re sat front row centre (the seats are unreserved) enrapt, many around us are laughing loudly.

All too soon its over and a new record is perhaps set for brevity in London theatre. As a trend (Escaped Alone and Oddshaped Balls recently) brevity in theatre may well be its next big thing.

10 minutes to spare before July is out and near to the Royal Court? We’ve a suggested venue offering thought-provoking and entertaining for you.

  • Picture via Facebook courtesy Royal Court. Tickets here.
  • Enjoyed this review? Follow its author on Twitter @NeilDurham

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