THEATRE REVIEW: On Bear Ridge starring Rhys Ifans, Rakie Ayola, Jason Hughes & Sion Daniel Young at the Royal Court

WORTH A LOOK?: ***

WHERE? Royal Court Theatre RUNTIME: 85 minutes (no interval)

WHEN? 26/10, press night 28/10, runs to 23/11/19

Owners John Daniel and Noni  are not leaving their isolated shop on Bear Ridge despite the lack of custom and instead are reminiscing about the times when people were not divided and used the old language.

  • Read on for reasons including why monstagigz favourite Sion Daniel Young shines here

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THEATRE REVIEW: Mary Poppins starring Zizi Strallen & Charlie Stemp

WORTH A LOOK?: ****1/2

WHERE? Prince Edward Theatre RUNTIME: 170 minutes (including 20-minute interval)

WHEN? 23/10, press night 13/11, runs to 29/3/20

This production is a revival of the show which ran at this very venue for more than three years and closed in January 2008 after winning a Tony and two Oliviers including Best Actress for then-titular star Laura Michelle Kelly.

  • Read on for reasons including how Zizi Strallen fares as Mary Poppins

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THEATRE REVIEW: Lungs starring Claire Foy & Matt Smith at the Old Vic

WORTH A LOOK?: *****

WHERE? Old Vic RUNTIME: 90 minutes (no interval)

WHEN? 14/10, opens 19/10, runs to 9/11/19

Lungs is a two-hander with barely any scenery by People, Places and Things author Duncan Macmillan about a couple considering starting a family and asking themselves questions including whether it would be an environmentally-friendly decision.

  • Read on for reasons including how Foy & Smith shape up on stage after years opposite each other in TV’s The Crown

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THEATRE REVIEW: Tokyo Rose at the New Diorama Theatre

WORTH A LOOK?: ***

WHERE? New Diorama Theatre RUNTIME: 75 minutes (no interval)

WHEN? 12/10 (matinee), closes 12/10/19

Word reached us from this summer’s Edinburgh Festival  that this new musical by Burnt Lemon Theatre was the show to catch.

  • Read on for reasons including how this has a fascinating World War Two-based true story at its heart

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THEATRE REVIEW: Glass. Kill. Bluebeard. Imp. starring Toby Jones, Deborah Findlay & Louisa Harland at the Royal Court

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

WHERE? Royal Court RUNTIME: 140 minutes (including 20-minute interval)

WHEN? 4/10, closes 12/10/19

This venue thrives on its reputation as ‘the writers’ theatre’ and the author of these four short plays with single-word titles is 81-year-old Caryl Churchill.

  • Read on for reasons including both appearances from Louisa Harland who plays Orla in Derry Girls

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THEATRE REVIEW: BIG The Musical starring Jay McGuiness and Kimberley Walsh

WORTH A LOOK?: ***

WHERE? Dominion Theatre RUNTIME: 160 minutes (including 20-minute interval)

WHEN? 2/10, closes 2/11/19

Fans of TV’s Strictly Come Dancing are especially well served here by a former winner of the Saturday night ratings hit as the leading man and a finalist as his leading lady.

  • Read on for reasons including how McGuiness combines wide-eyed naivety with dancing as good as Charlie Stemp’s

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THEATRE REVIEW: Brooklyn – The Musical at Greenwich Theatre

WORTH A LOOK?: *****

WHERE? Greenwich Theatre RUNTIME: 130 minutes (including 20-minute interval)

WHEN? press night 30/9, closes 19/10/19 (press ticket)

‘When you change someone’s life, you change your own’, is the sentiment of this European premiere of a show which breaks your heart before helping you to piece it back together again, beautifully.

  • Read on for reasons including why this press night deserved its standing ovation plus this five stars (and stripes) review

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LAST NIGHT: CABARET REVIEW: Gals Aloud starring Cheryl Hole from RuPaul’s Drag Race UK at the Underbelly Festival

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

WHERE? Underbelly Festival RUNTIME: 70 minutes

WHEN? 19/9/19

Cheryl Hole (pictured centre above) thinks Gals Aloud are more likely to be performing together to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the formation of Girls Aloud in 2022 than the actual group.

  • Read on for reasons including how to see Cheryl on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK

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LAST NIGHT: THEATRE REVIEW: MUSIK starring Frances Barber at Leicester Square Theatre

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

WHERE? Leicester Square Theatre RUNTIME: 60 minutes

WHEN? 7/9/19, closes 7/9/19

STOP PRESS: MUSIK returns to the Leicester Square Theatre 5/2 – 1/3/20. Tickets

‘About me, the critics lied. I ignored them – and survived,’ sang character Billie Trix in song Friendly Fire (see below) played by Frances Barber in ahead-of-its-time 2001 Pet Shop Boys’ musical Closer To Heaven.

  • Read on for reasons including how this show needs a longer West End run soon

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THEATRE REVIEW: A Very Expensive Poison starring Reece Shearsmith at the Old Vic

WORTH A LOOK?: ***

WHERE? Old Vic RUNTIME: 170 minutes (including a 20-minute interval)

WHEN? 3/9, opens 5/9 and runs to 5/10/19

‘The only thing that’s criminal here is the £4 cost of a programme – and that you have to go outside to pee.’

  • Read on for reasons including how League Of Gentleman star Reece Shearsmith is the comic highlight here

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