Views from the Stalls and Views from the Sofa - My reviews and thoughts on all things theatre and television. Follow me on Twitter @LikeTheMonth_

Sunday, 20 March 2016

Bad Girls The Musical - A Retrospective Review

                                      Bad Girls The Musical - Union Theatre cast Photo credit: Andy Coxon   

In recent years The Union Theatre has built a reputation for high quality revivals of rarely performed musicals, re-inventing shows that have often unfairly been labelled 'flops' in their original productions. This is true of their most recent revival, 'Bad Girls The Musical', which despite largely positive reviews ran for only three months at the West End's Garrick Theatre in 2007 after sadly failing to find an audience.  Based upon the popular ITV prison drama series of the same name, Bad Girls seemed an unlikely subject for a musical then and after almost ten years of silence it seemed an even unlikelier prospect for a revival.  It was with a mixture of surprise, excitement and trepidation that I made my way to the Union Theatre to see whether the ladies of Larkhall prison should indeed be let loose on theatreland again.

Sunday, 22 September 2013

The Sound of Music - Regents Park Open Air Theatre - Review

The Sound of Music Review – 31st August 2013 – matinee performance

It was even something of a surprise to me when I realised that in my years of theatregoing I had never seen a live stage production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s classic, ‘The Sound of Music’.  Therefore, an outing to the summer production at Regents Park Open Air Theatre seemed the perfect chance to rectify this.  It was with some trepidation however, could the live version match up to such a much-loved movie?

Saturday, 3 August 2013

9-5 The Musical - Review - Liverpool Empire Theatre

Saturday 3rd August 2013 - matinee

At the end of 9-5 The Musical, Dolly Parton addresses the audience via a prerecorded video message and encourages those who have enjoyed the show to spread the word and tell everyone they know.  I feel a particular sense of duty to do this as, knowing nothing about the musical or the 1980 film on which it is based & seeing Dolly’s image all over the publicity material, I assumed it was a 'jukebox' musical of the [insert song here] variety, complete with a character called Jolene and all of Parton’s biggest hits.

I have never been happier to be so completely and utterly wrong.  

Sunday, 30 June 2013

'Judy & Liza' - Review - Epstein Theatre, Liverpool

Saturday 29th June 2013

It is not often you see two legends of musical theatre performing on stage together, but it certainly felt that way last night watching Judy & Liza at Liverpool’s Epstein Theatre.  Performing as one of the most famous mother-daughter duos of all time, Judy Garland and Liza Minnelli (as if you hadn’t guessed), Lucy Williamson and Emma Dears managed to bring these two extraordinary performers to life. 

'This Is My Family' - Review - Sheffield Crucible Studio


Thursday 27th June - Matinee

The prospect of a new British musical always fills me with excitement and for this reason I travelled to Sheffield Crucible to see the premiere of This Is My Family; a new musical with book, music and lyrics by Tim Firth and impeccably directed by Daniel Evans. 

Sunday, 21 April 2013

'The Hired Man' - Review - Curve Theatre (Studio), Leicester

The Hired Man – Saturday 20th April, matinee.

When I started this blog I named it ‘Moments in the Woods’ partly because I love the Stephen Sondheim song of the same name but also because there are moments at the theatre where I get the indescribable feeling that I am watching something special.  It may be a song, a particular performance or even just a tiny gesture within a scene but when that ‘moment’ comes, I know I will remember it forever.   It doesn’t happen often but I mention this here because yesterdays performance of Melvyn Bragg and Howard Goodall’s 1984 musical ‘The Hired Man’, was full of these ‘moments’ and I don’t think I will be able to accurately put into words just how beautiful this musical is. 

Saturday, 16 March 2013

'Hope' - Royal Court Theatre, Liverpool - Review

Saturday 16th March - matinee performance 

The Royal Court in Liverpool is currently showing the world premiere of ‘Hope’, billed as both a psychological thriller and a ‘darkly comical love story’ by multi-talented writer, director and actor Scot Williams.  

The play centres around Norm, a writer struggling to finish his novel though insisting he does not believe in writer’s block.  His housemate, Guy (Rene Zagger) is a constant source of distraction and irritation who questions Norm’s every action and opinion.  Their third housemate, Hope (Samantha Womack) floats in and out of their conversations, playfully teasing that she has a secret.  Writer Scot Williams makes up the cast, playing Victor, a mysterious figure brought back to the house by Hope who seems to know more about the other housemates than they realise.