Myth – REVIEW

Myth 

The Other Palace, London

★★★★ 

Myth

The Other Palace, London

 

Seen on March 16th, 2018

Reviewed by Jade Prince

★★★★

Okay, so this will have two parts. Two separate posts. One being a review of the most recent production at The Other Palace and the other being comments on the development. I managed to see the show back in 2016 at the Cockpit theatre when it was ’27’. I loved the show back then and still do today.

I will try my hardest to make this review as if it was my first encounter with the show.

This was a workshop run at The Other Palace.

For those not aware of this story, it is heavily based on Ancient Greek mythology. More specifically Orpheus and his encounter with the underworld. As the rock score would imply it is a modern rendition of this historical tale.

This is most definitely a darker show in comparison to those in London currently. It touches on the very difficult topic of mental health. It perfectly represents how mental health is overlooked and how when it is identified, all attention goes to that one person drawing focus away from those also suffering. This is something that occurs so often.

Orpheus is the lead character struggling with a huge life change, being propelled to stardom. The audience are shown his ways of coping which are detrimental to his life, health, friends and family. An even darker turn is that all of this had been decided before hand. The fates knew exactly what they were doing.

The vocals were outstanding. Oh my goodness. That cast is so talented. The harmonies and power. They tore the roof off the theatre. Some standouts were definitely Eloise Davies (Clotho, a fate), Jodie Jacobs (Atropos, another fate), Joel Harper-Jackson (Orpheus) and Zoe Birkett (Miss. M) That’s not to say the rest of the cast weren’t on fire because they most certainly were. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a cast of that standard. Not a single weak link.

Although I really enjoyed the show there were a few things which I noted which could’ve been improved and with it being a workshop feedback is needed to develop it into the wonderful show it could be. I believe there is a lot of improvement to be had with the script. As previously stated, the whole concept of the show is very unique. I just felt parts of the script fell flat. One particular scene was about halfway through act 1 when Orpheus meets Hades in the underworld. That scene was very dragged out and I even found myself losing interest and willing the next number to come along.

I really struggled with the names. I know that they are all Ancient Greek mythology related which is very in keeping. I just really struggled remembering them and therefore making connections with the characters. Obviously having such an emotional show I feel it should be important to put memorable names to faces. I had no issues with some names such as Mel, Miss. M, Pandora, Orpheus (obviously!) and Hades. The main characters. But if you were to ask me what the other minor characters were called, I wouldn’t be able to tell you.

One thing I like about The Other Palace is that the performance is not restricted to the stage. Throughout the show the stairs were uses (not too great if your back was facing said stairs) and characters actually sat in spare seats in the audience. There was a chat show scene where this worked so well.

Something which really got to me emotionally was the final number. The main stage was used but also the stairs of the theatre. One was a happy image and one was sad but you could choose which one you wanted to watch. I am not too sure why that blew my mind but it was a really nice touch. This also links to the chat show scene. It is nice to have the choice in what you watch although the whole story is still present. Easily missed behaviours and actions are noticed which add so much more to your understanding of the show.

I thoroughly enjoyed the show. Outstanding music with a great plot. I really need a cast recording ASAP!

I really do think that I have found my favourite new musical. The whole concept is incredible. I can really see it being mega when everything is where it needs to be. I am beyond excited to see how this show develops even further in the future and endeavour to be there every step of the way!

Part two of this post is linked here were you can see some of my thought on developmental changes which have been made since 2016.

Olivier Awards 2018 Nominations and Predictions

It’s been a week since the Olivier Award nominees were announced and I am very behind on the whole theatre scene due to health issues however I am now on the mend and have decided to do a little write-up on the nominations. This is probably the very first year that I have agreed with the selection. Other years I have completely disagreed. While I still believe the range of shows and talent acknowledged is limited, this year seems to have taken the talent factor into account as a pose to the popularity factor. SOLT, you are improving!

— Those in bold are the ones I want to win. Those bold AND underlined are my predictions for the actual winner of the category. If there is only one in bold and underlined it is because that is what I want to win and also predict to win. I won’t be making comments on all of the predictions I make. Also, final note, I shall be linking some of my reviews through out this post so be sure to check them out! —

Lets crack on!

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Best New Musical

An American in Paris, Dominion Theatre

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, Apollo Theatre

Girl From the north Country, The Old Vic and Noel Coward Theatre

Hamilton, Victoria Palace Theatre

Young Frankenstein, Garrick Theatre

I really want Hamilton to win but then again I am a Hamilton whore so that’s that! The only one that I really can’t see winning is Young Frankenstein. I really didn’t like that show. Not my humour at all and An American in Paris was very mediocre. I can see Everybody’s Talking About Jamie smashing it simply because it is 100% relevant at the moment. That’s not me saying that something shouldn’t win because it’s not relevant. If it’s making an impact on society, it’s great!

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Best New Play

The Ferryman, Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

Ink, Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre

Network, National Theatre – Lyttelton

Oslo, Harold Pinter Theatre

This category is difficult to predict. The small handful of shows that I never got around to see! Ha! And they all seemed to be received very well.

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Best Director

Dominic Cooke, FOLLIES, National Theatre – Olivier

Marianne Elliott, ANGEL IN AMERICA, National Theatre – Lyttelton

Rupert Goold, INK, Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre

Thomas Kail, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre

Sam Mendes, THE FERRYMAN, Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

HAM-IL-TON!!!! You’re going to start seeing a pattern here! It was just stunning!

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Best Actress

Laura Donnelly, THE FERRYMAN, Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

Lesley Manville, LONG DAY’S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT, Wyndham’s Theatre

Audra McDonald, LADY DAY AT EMERSON’S BAR & GRILL, Wyndham’s Theatre

Imelda Staunton, WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?, Harold Pinter Theatre

How can you put two queens together?! I didn’t have the chance to see Laura or Lesley but both Audra and Imelda were outstanding! Two very different performances but both still touched me and left an impact.

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Best Actor

Paddy Considine, THE FERRYMAN, Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

Bryan Cranston, NETWORK, National Theatre – Lyttelton

Andrew Garfield, ANGELS IN AMERICA, National Theatre – Lyttelton

Andrew Scott, HAMLET, Almeida Theatre

Once again, this is another category I can’t really comment on so I’ve made my prediction based on what I’ve heard.

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Outstanding Achievement in Opera

Paul Brown for his set and costume designs for IOLANTHE, London Coliseum

Joyce Didonato and Daniela Barcellona for their performance in SEMIRAMIDE, Royal Opera House

Roderick Williams for his performance in the Royal Opera’s THE RETURN OF ULYSSES, The Roundhouse

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Best New Opera

La Boheme, Trafalgar Studios 2 

The Exterminating Angel, Royal Opera House

Semiramide, Royal Opera House

I got to see La Boheme and I was blown away! I’ve linked my review just incase you have the urge to read it but it was such a beautiful modernised version of such a well-known classic.

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Best Actress in a Supporting Role

Brid Brennan, THE FERRYMAN, Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

Denise Gough, ANGLES IN AMERICA, National Theatre – Lyttelton

Deaebhla Molloy, THE FERRYMAN, Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

Imogen Poots, WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?, Harold Pinter Theatre

I have a feeling ‘Angels in America’ is going to dominate the play categories.

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Best Actor in a Supporting Role

Bertie Carvel, INK, Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre

John Hodgkinson, THE FERRYMAN, Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

James McArdle, ANGLES IN AMERICA, National Theatre – Lyttelton

Peter Polycarpou, OSLO, Harold Pinter Theatre

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Best Set Design

Bunny Christie, INK, Almeida Theatre and Duke of York’s Theatre

Bob Crowley and 59 Productions, AN AMERICAN IN PARIS, Dominion Theatre

Rob Howell, THE FERRYMAN, Gielgud Theatre and Jerwood Theatre Downstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

Vicki Mortimer, FOLLIES, National Theatre – Olivier 

The set of Follies was stunning. Definitely the type of set design that I love!

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Best Costume Design

Hugh Darrant, DICK WHITTINGTON, London Palladium

Roger Kirk, 42ND STREET, Theatre Royal Drury Lane

Vicki Mortier, FOLLIES, National Theatre – Olivier

Paul Tazewell, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre

These fours shows were great with there own costumes but for me personally, there can only be one winner.

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Best Sound Design

Tom Gibbons, HAMELT, Almeida Theatre

Gareth Owen, BAT OUT OF HELL THE MUSICAL, London Coliseum

Eric Sleichim, NETWORK, National Theatre – Lyttelton

Nevin Steiner, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre 

Another close call but as soon as you hear ‘dun, du-du-du-dun, dun, dun’ you have to hand over that award.

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Best Lighting Design

Howell Binkley, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre

Paule Constable, ANGLES IN AMERICA, National Theatre – Lyttelton

Paule Constable, FOLLIES, National Theatre – Olivier

Jan Versweyveld, NETWORK, National Theatre – Lyttelton

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Outstanding Achievement in Affiliated Theatre

The B*easts, Bush Theatre

Killology, Jerwood Theatre Upstairs at the Royal Court Theatre

The Red Lion, Trafalgar Studios 2

The Revlon Girl, Park Theatre

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Best New Comedy

Dry Powder, Hampstead Theatre

Labour of Love, Noel Coward Theatre

Mischief Movie Night, Arts Theatre

The Miser, Garrick Theatre

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Best Revival

Angels in America, National Theatre – Lyttelton

Hamlet, Almeida Theatre

Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Harold Pinter Theatre 

Witness For the Prosecution, London County Hall

I went to see ‘Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?’ on a whim. I found a cheap seat and everyone was raving about it and was horrified to find out it was 3 hours long. At that point I didn’t like plays and had only seen a handful. But, woah! To say I enjoyed it was an understatement. Those three hours flew by. I was captivated.

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Best Actress in a Musical

Janie Dee, FOLLIES, National Theatre – Olivier

Shirley Henderson, GIRL FROM THE NORTH COUNTRY, The Old Vic and Noel Coward Theatre

Imelda Staunton, FOLLIES, National Theatre – Olivier 

Josie Walker, EVERYBODY’S TALKING ABOUT JAMIE, Apollo Theatre

For me the winner has to be Shirley Henderson. Everything about her performance in ‘Girl from the North Country’ was flawless. Such a difficult role. All the ladies did very well in this category though.

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Best Actor in a Musical

Ciaran Hinds, GIRL FROM THE NORTH COUNTRY, The Old Vic and Noel Coward Theatre

John McCrea, EVERYBODY’S TALKING ABOUT JAMIE, Apollo Theatre

Giles Terera, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre

Jamael Westman, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre

I have a strong feeling John McCrea will win this one. I don’t necessarily agree with this if it happens. His performance wasn’t out of this world. Considering Jamael is new to the scene he has done so well! I was a little dubious seeing someone fresh out of drama school would be taking the lead in Hamilton but I was pleasantly surprised!

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Best Musical Revival

42nd Street, Theatre Royal Drury Lane

Follies, National Theatre – Olivier 

On The Town, Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre

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Best Theatre Choreographer

Andy Blankenbuehler, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre 

Bill Deamer, FOLLIES, National Theatre – Olivier

Kate Prince, EVERYBODY’S TALKING ABOUT JAMIE, Apollo Theatre

Randy Skinner, 42ND STREET, Theatre Royal Drury Lane

Christopher Wheeldon, AN AMERICAN IN PARIS, Dominion Theatre

Hamilton is gonna win this one! But the choreography in both ‘Everybody’s Talking About Jamie’ and ‘42nd Street’ was beautiful. Completely different styles which complimented the shows perfectly and evoked different emotions.

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Best Entertainment & Family

David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny, Garrick Theatre

Derren Brown: Underground, Playhouse Theatre 

Dick Whittington, London Palladium

Five Guys Named Moe, Marble Arch Theatre

How did I miss/forget about this category?! Derren Brown is an outstanding show man! And, come on, it was at Playhouse. My baby! But I do think Gangsta Granny will win simply by popularity with entire families however I didn’t hear much about it when it was playing at Garrick Theatre. Maybe it will be the dark horse.

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Outstanding Achievement in Dance

Rocio Molina for pushing the boundary of flamenco in FALLEN FROM HEAVEN (CAIDA DEL CIELO) for Dance Umbrella, Barbican Theatre

Francesce Velicu for her performance in English National Ballet’s Production of Pina Bausch’s LE SACRE DU PRINTEMPS, Sadler’s Wells

Zenaida Yanowsky for her performance in Liam Scarlett’s SYMPHONIC DANCES for the Royal Ballet, Royal Opera House

I actually have no predictions for this partly because I am so unfamiliar with the pieces also I fell that dance is very subjective.

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Best New Dance Production

Flight Pattern, Crystal Pite for the Royal Ballet, Royal Opera House

Goat, Ben Duke for Rumbert Dance Company, Sadler’s Wells

Grand Finale, Hofesh Shechter, Salder’s Wells

Tree of Codes, Wayne McGregor and the Paris Opera Ballet, Sadler’s Wells

Once again, I actually have no predictions for this partly because I am so unfamiliar with the pieces also I fell that dance is very subjective.

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Outstanding Achievement in Music

Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, music and orchestrations by Dan Gillespie Sells, his debut as a musical theatre composer and orchestrator, Apollo Theatre

Follies, the orchestra, under the Music Supervision of Nicholas Skillbeck and Music Director Nigel Lilley, National Theatre – Olivier

Girl From the north Country, music & lyrics by Bob Dylan, original orchestrations & arrangements by Simon Hale, The Old Vic and Noel Coward Theatre

Hamilton, composer-lyricist Lin-Manuel Miranda, Victoria Palace Theatre

LIN. LIN. LIN. KING!

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Best Actress in a Supporting Role in a Musical

Shelia Atim, GIRL FROM THE NORTH COUNTRY, The Old Vic and Noel Coward Theatre

Tracie Bennett, FOLLIES, National Theatre – Olivier

Rachel John, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre 

Lesley Josph, YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, Garrick Theatre

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Best Actor in a Supporting Role in a Musical

Michael Jibson, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre

Ross Noble, YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, Garrick Theatre

Jason Pennycooke, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre

Cleve September, HAMILTON, Victoria Palace Theatre 

Not even a second thought, Cleve all the way! So proud of that guy and how far he has come over the past couple of years!!!! The others are great in this category but it HAS to be Cleve!

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Now lets wait and see how completely wrong I am! All the best to everyone nominated. You should all be proud of the achievement of getting this far!

Theatre Maker Launch at the Cockpit Theatre

Sunday 18th February, 2018

For those not familiar with the Cockpit theatre, it is a fabulous little venue in Marylebone. It is a chameleon of a building. Used for rehearsal spaces, a main theatre auditorium with 420 seats and a bar where they host a number of different events. Whether that is presenting shows, hosting events, training days, industry events, the Cockpit is an incredibly welcoming space which cherishes new creators and their works.

They have been working on a brand new hub focusing on those making theatre. This hub will consist of classes, courses, workshops, talks and drop in session in order to aid people with new skills and to share and develop their own ideas. Various workshops will take place as well as the weekly drop in session scheduled for every Wednesday at 6pm in the bar.

In this blog I shall be giving a run down of the launch day, what went well, what I didn’t like so much and then I shall be delving into what is on offer and what taster sessions I took part in. These will be in more detail explaining exactly what we did and what you can expect to see followed by MORE information of the available course along with prices, date and time frames.

From the moment I stepped foot into the theatre I was greeted with a fabulous friendly welcome which you can always expect from the Cockpit staff. You’re always made to feel welcome there and I truly believe that this would be the best place in London to take evening classes/courses/share ideas with other creatives.

When we arrived we were given the agenda detailing everything that would be happening over the next 4/5 hours. There was also the breakdown of the taster sessions happening through the day with 3 lots of 40 minute session with 10 minute breaks.

The agenda for the morning:

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(I’ve circled the taster session I attended)

The numbers were very disappointing considering how any people had booked on. All of those people who were no shows really missed out on some great sessions.

The first session of the day was ‘From Theatre Maker to Film Maker’ led by Steve North. This was great and provided a brand new experience. Steve has had a very colourful career initially starting off in acting and has now moved into theatre making. His most recent achievement was co-writing the short film ‘Through the K-Hole’ and directed the hard winning ‘Cregan’.

His actual course is a lot longer however we had a great insight. He stripped it right back and we started looking at our own memories and how they are personal. We did a simple exercise of writing down three different memories: one from last year, one from last week and one personal memory from any point in our lives. We then paired up and had to tell the other person our memory. It was then open for them to retell that memory to us and then in the group when we all came together, stood in the dark. It was a very strange experience because these memories that had once been our own where now someone else’s. It was such a strange feeling listen to your own memory from a different person. I found myself sympathising and nodding my head as if I was sympathising with the person even though it was what I had dealt with. We did this a few time but it was a great way to see how we connect to personal stories and the benefit of focusing on a personal experience when starting to write the concept and script for a short film.

The second taster session of the day was with Sarah Fraser and focused on making theatre from scratch. Obviously this is a very broad topic and her course will delve in deeper to the whole process but it was great what we did in the session.

A little background on Sarah – she has helped create the theatre company ‘Hoax’. In 2012 she graduated from the Central School of Speech and Drama with her MA in Classical Acting. From there she has worked in immersive theatre and has had a real focus on physical theatre, using voice on the body to create brand new work.

It was basically a whole game session to break the ice and make everyone feel comfortable around each other which is obviously key when working in a team which need to be very close and on the same wave-length. The improvisation game was fabulous. We were simply handed a scarf and told to run wild with one rule: the scarf could not at any point be used as a scarf. It was great to see people improvising and for others in the group to so willingly join in with ideas. Everyone was on board 110%. Sarah’s energy and passion was infectious and I strongly believe that people on this course will benefit immensely.

The third and final taster session I took part in wasn’t what I thought it was going to be. If you have read my previous blogs and review you will have noticed that I like to go into things ‘blind’. Without knowing the story/previous reviews/or reading much on the theatre website so I did not read into each of the different taster sessions. I simply turned up on the day and selected whatever sounded interesting to me. This was the ‘making theatre using visual and physical techniques’ session led by Miriam King.

For some reason I was expecting it to be very heavily focused on props and scenery and other ways of presenting the story on stage. I was very wrong. Miriam specialises in physical movement and how that tells the story. The exercise we did was very beneficial in understanding how to ground ourselves and move into a neutral state. This would be perfect for actors when transforming into drastically different characters from their normal selves however I did struggle to connect and enjoy it. I know that sounds really harsh but it just wasn’t something I enjoy. Miriam is very experienced and really puts the whole of herself into her teachings.

Before I knew it the taster sessions where over and it was time to watch the performance of ‘The Silent Stream’ which was written and performed by Jonathan Brown.

This was definitely not my type of theatre. I started drifting into my theatre reviewer state (not that I was there to review the performance). We saw this performance as Jonathan Brown runs the ‘Making theatre as a solo performer’ course which will be running as part of Theatre Maker. Having read up on the one man show since I have seen it, I do believe that there is greatness behind it. Especially as its has sequels entitled “Betsy: Wisdom of a Brighton Whore” (a one woman show) and “The Well” (ensemble piece). I would be intrigued to see these pieces now. I found the performance of ‘The Silent Stream’ to be very slow. It seemed to be a little all over the place and was very hard to follow. I personally feel that it would work better as an ensemble piece. This might help it flow better especially when two or more characters are presented at once on stage. What I saw definitely had potential though.

Anyway, this isn’t a review on that show, its a write up on the whole ‘Theatre Maker’ launch day experience! I really enjoyed it from the start. I have to admit ‘the Silent Stream’ was the only let down. It didn’t advertise the course in the best way and I think a lot of people were lacking enthusiasm by that point. From the taster sessions I have seen, I really do have high hopes for what the Cockpit have planned.

Below I shall include all the information you will need about the different courses, prices, time frames, and dates as well as links to the cockpit so you can keep up to date with all of their latest information and for the possibility to attend any future taster sessions.

The classes which will be offered area:

For more information on Theatre Maker at the Cockpit: http://thecockpit.org.uk/Theatremaker

Follow the Cockpit on twitter for all of the latest information: https://twitter.com/cockpittheatre

Thank you or reading this far! Here is a little reward – If you book onto a course before 6pm Monday 26th February, 2018 you can take full advantage of the one-off launch day code ‘INVOLVED18’ to get 15% off! You’re welcome!

Life is too short. Take the chance and make captivating theatre!

Eugenius! – REVIEW

Eugenius!

The Other Palace, London

★★★★

Eugenius!

The Other Palace, London

 

Seen on January 31st, 2018

Reviewed by Jade Prince

★★★★

Eugenius has returned to London after a stellar run last year at the London Palladium. This time it has taken up residence in the much smaller venue, The Other Palace. Complete 80s pop culture over-load, Eugene (Liam Forde) is a teenager. More importantly a geek ridiculed by the world. His world. High school. His safety being the creation of comic book superheroes. From a small hobby, Eugene is shot straight to Hollywood as his idea takes off but reveals struggles along the way maintaining the art and true friendships. Sometimes the fictional world can be a lot realer than it seems.

It was such a fun show to watch! Everything about it had energy. It’s not the best thing that I have seen but I can understand why so many people love it. The majority of the music is incredibly catchy with a variety of different music styles from 80s pop to the standard love ballads to more comical numbers. I have to be completely honest and say that the closing number has been stuck in my head since I left the theatre. “GO EUGENIUS!! Go Eugene!” The whole soundtrack was very upbeat and enjoyable but I don’t feel it would be a soundtrack that I would be able to listen to fully outside of the show. The odd feel-good songs have now been added to my ‘morning motivation’ playlist. The rest would be enjoyed if I saw the show again.

I rather enjoyed the choreography although I found that it lost its full potential due to the stage size. This production would suit a larger stage. It all just felt a tad crowded but they made what they had work.

The script for certain characters was great, especially for Ferris (Daniel Buckley). I did not expect half the things he said which made it so much funnier. The rest of it was rather mediocre and I did find myself willing the next number to start. None of it was irrelevant, just a little slow.

I don’t like doing this part simply because the whole cast were great, we have a standout performer – Laura Baldwin (Janey) was fabulous. He voice is so petite yet so very powerful and she really got to demonstrate that. I spent so long trying to work out what I’d seen her in before. It turns out it was ‘Little Beasts‘! She presented such a caring glow about Janey which was lovely to watch.

It was wonderful seeing all the characters so drastically different! A camp Hollywood talent scout (Theo, Scott Paige). A guy who has to be at the top of the food chain with everybody  kissing his ass (Lex, Cameron Blackely). Somebody born to flaunt her ‘assets’ (Carrie, Melissa James). With the exception of a chameleon of ensemble members (Alison Arnopp, Jacob Fisher, Alex Tranter, Luke Dowling, Frances Dee, Chloe chambers and Rosie Heath)

Overall, I really enjoyed the evening however I can’t help but feel something was missing. I can’t quite put my finger on it. It was missing its wow factor. Despite this, Eugenius is definitely a show to bring back nostalgia for people who grew up in that decade with hilarious references! However people not of that generation will also understand the vast majority of the references too! It will be enjoyed by all (12+)

You can find Eugenius at The Other Palace until March 3rd. For more information on the show and tickets please visit https://www.theotherpalace.co.uk/whats-on/eugenius

#GOEUGENIUS

The Believers are but Brothers – REVIEW

The Believers are but Brothers

Bush Theatre, Shepherd’s Bush, London

★★★★★

The Believers are but Brothers

Bush Theatre, Shepherd’s Bush, London

Seen on January 31st, 2018

Reviewed by Jade Prince

★★★★★

This unique one-man show provides a hard hitting take on the social world in which we currently live in. Touching on topics such as terrorism, politics and resentment this performance is thought provoking from the onset. Even before entering the theatre, from just reading the programme, the cogs in my brain were set into motion. The main focus of this show is how three resented men from different walks of life with access to the internet rapidly have their lives changed to accommodate a radical point of view.

(DISCLAIMER – a lot will be revealed in this review so if you are wanting to see the show without any prior knowledge I recommend you stop reading. However if you don’t mind and are still intrigued, please continue reading!) 

Let’s start off by saying this is unlike anything I have ever seen and unlike anything currently out there, 100% with the times and so relevant. It was a slight shock walking into the theatre and hearing the words ‘would you like to join our WhatsApp group to use during the performance?’. This is a unique part of this performance which really added to the topic. It emphasised the fact that everyone is in immediate connection and despite being in a room of say 50-odd people, we were all still completely anonymous. The only identification we had was the first name that would appear on the WhatsApp message if we decided to send one. That was really hard hitting for me, personally. The anonymity of everyone in the room was really felt when we were all asked to message the strangest thing we had seen on the internet. That brought up some strange things! I have to admit that at some points having the WhatsApp messages coming through was slightly distracting and I struggled focusing on what Javaad Alipoor was saying. With the messages coming through it was so difficult to determine what was real and what was scripted which demonstrated the world of fantasy and reality online.

The whole performance was so engaging. It felt like I was watching a documentary. I definitely came out feeling different in a strange way and with a changed view on the social media world. It was an education I believe everybody needs in relation to some of the topics it touched on regarding the type of information you put out online and the repercussion that may have. I do love a good piece that makes you think.

The show itself was very basic. Very raw. It was scripted but the way Javaad delivered the script made it feel like he was having a genuine conversation with you about something he is truly passionate about. There were no elaborate sets (although the set was very pleasing to look at), no extravagant lighting used. Just Javaad on a stage with a desk, a few computers, a microphone and a mesh screen for the projected images. That was another great aspect, having the media displayed in different ways. It wasn’t just an hour of Javaad talking at you.

This is one I would highly recommend and deeply believe that everyone would take something different from the show whether or not it is something that you have an interested in. Ticket prices range from £10-£17.50 and is running until February 10th. More information can be found at https://www.bushtheatre.co.uk/event/the-believers-are-but-brothers/