All stories by Libby Purves on BroadwayStars

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

RED RIDING HOOD AND THE BIG BAD PIG JW3, London by Libby Purves and Friends

  CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE SPIRIT      Can this really be the first Jewish pantomime?  Oy vay, surely this culture with its musical genius,  ironic jokes , family warmth,   tall tales and…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 06:29PM

PANDEMONIUM Soho Theatre, Dean Street by Libby Purves and Friends

ANOTHER KIND OF INQUIRY    I suppose we will have to wait a few years for the dust to settle and James Graham to write a nuanced play about the Boris-Covid-Tory-pocalypse. Meanwhile this 8…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 03:08AM
Sunday, December 10, 2023

A CHRISTMAS CAROL: IN CONCERT           Touring  by Libby Purves and Friends

DICKENS IN RIOTOUS RHYME AND BAGPIPES – ON TOUR      Wouldn’t be right to get through December without Dickens, would it?   But I have seen the magnificent Old Vic adaptation by Jack…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 09:43AM
Wednesday, November 29, 2023

GOLDA Tabernacle, W11 by Libby Purves and Friends

   I don’t usually record anything that’s two-nights-only, but this one I think will flower and fly, so watch out for it.  It’s already looking like turning up in March at TR Haymar…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 02:32AM
Tuesday, November 28, 2023

ODYSSEY – A HEROIC PANTOMIME          Jermyn Street Theatre WC1 by Libby Purves and Friends

BEWARE OF GREEKS BRINGING GAGS    Where does Kylie get her kebabs?  From Jason’s doner van!   If that makes you scuttle away in fright, you have not yet achieved the correct seasonal a…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 06:02PM
Saturday, November 25, 2023

GHOSTS Wanamaker, SE1 by Libby Purves and Friends

DARK BEFORE THE DAWN        To emerge with any redemptive sense from Joe Hill-Gibbins’  spare, scorching  rather brilliant production,  it helps to remember that Henrik Ibsen, after…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 09:21AM
Friday, November 24, 2023

THE WITCHES Olivier, SE1 by Libby Purves and Friends

ANY TOIL AND TROUBLE WAS WELL WORTH IT Everything a child could want is here:   the dark thrill of imagined orphanhood, a quest,  baddies , jeopardy and jokes, bouncy musical spectacle,  …

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 05:30AM
Wednesday, November 22, 2023

SHE STOOPS TO CONQUER Orange Tree, Richmond by Libby Purves and Friends

GOLDSMITH BEATEN LIGHT AS AIR      Nice symmetry in Tom Littler’s decision to set Oliver Goldsmith’s 1773 comedy in the Wodehousian Jazz Age:  the Georgians, with their boozy monarch…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 06:43PM
Friday, November 10, 2023

MATES IN CHELSEA Royal Court, SW1 by Libby Purves and Friends

FLAT WHITE AND WOEFUL        If you’re going to splash out on a visually arresting finale of assassination, a vivId fire destroying a Norman tower and a lyrical monologue about Lenin,�…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 07:10AM

THE MERCHANT OF VENICE 1936 by Libby Purves and Friends

ECHOES OF DARKNESS     Jews gather, laughing and chattering, offering a toast as they run down the aisles to settle downstage for a Passover meal with candles, prayers and the ancient ques…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 03:55AM
Thursday, November 9, 2023

CLYDE’S. Donmar, wC2 by Libby Purves and Friends

FAR MORE THAN A SNACK     Caught this late, and it’s much reviewed and almost sold out. But it’s worth saying in a brief word here that if you buy a return as I did, you are in  luck.…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 12:58PM
Tuesday, November 7, 2023

BACKSTAIRS BILLY Duke of York’s theatre WC2 by Libby Purves and Friends

A QUEEN WHO NEEDED QUEENS     The curtain rises on the Clarence House garden room in 1979,  where the Queen Mother held her eccentric little court.  Much gilding, unreasonably many oil …

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 06:58PM

TO HAVE AND TO HOLD Hampstead Theatre by Libby Purves and Friends

      WHEN WE THAT ARE LEFT GROW OLD….       Sometimes you have to rely on a team with multiple comedy awards to  hold a mirror to society and move your heart.  This is by Richard …

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 05:13AM
Monday, November 6, 2023

REVIEW: The Time Traveller’s Wife, Apollo Theatre ✭✭✭✭ by Libby Purves

By Libby Purves Our very own theatreCat Libby Purves reviews new musical The Time Traveller's Wife at the Apollo Theatre, London. This post REVIEW: The Time Traveller’s Wife, Apollo Theatr…

SOURCE: britishtheatre.com at 11:06PM
Thursday, November 2, 2023

THE INTERVIEW. Park Theatre by Libby Purves and Friends

DIANA AND THE DECEIVER Jonathan Maitland did a superb play for this theatre about Thatcher and Howe, “Dead Sheep”, and one on Jimmy Savile which was far more telling and cathartic than t…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 04:42PM
Wednesday, November 1, 2023

THE TIME TRAVELLER’S WIFE. Apollo, W1 by Libby Purves and Friends

SCIENCE FANTASY AND HONEST EMOTION        I don’t normally indulge in first-night anecdotes,  but feel I should mention that in the big wedding scene Joanna Woodward tossed her bouque…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 08:23PM

AND THEN THERE WERE NONE. Richmond & touring by Libby Purves and Friends

AGATHA STRIKES AGAIN       This is Extreme Agatha Christie, her most preposterous (and bestselling) plot and one of the most murderously morbid (NB the final moments of the staging are no…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 06:59PM
Tuesday, October 31, 2023

JEFFREY BERNARD IS UNWELL. Coach and Horses, Soho by Libby Purves and Friends

MEMORIES OF A MAVERICK   It’s an immersive show, in that you buy a drink in the cramped saloon of the old pub on Greek Street, find a corner, and ideally fall into conversation with anoth…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 07:20PM

THE INQUIRY Minerva, Chichester by Libby Purves and Friends

WHILE THE REAL ONE RUNS…. With the Covid Inquiry surging along in a froth of accusations and curses and scandalous Whatsappery, it was hard to resist a hasty day-return to Harry Davies’ …

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 02:12PM
Friday, October 27, 2023

THE UNGODLY Red Rose Chain, Ipswich by Libby Purves and Friends

THE FIRST WITCHFINDER, NOT WITHOUT LESSONS FOR TODAY         This is remarkable,  Joanna Carrick’s best and deepest play yet,   following her acclaimed Reformation trilogy. In its sm…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 07:44AM
Wednesday, October 25, 2023

THE CONFESSIONS Lyttelton, SE1 by Libby Purves and Friends

A MOTHER’S LIFE, A SON’S PERSPECTIVE Sometimes it is almost useful to be a day late (sorry,  tied up yesterday) because it gives a chance to read other people’s take on the play you s…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 06:25AM
Friday, October 20, 2023

THE SCORE Theatre Royal, Bath by Libby Purves and Friends

GENIUS, REALPOLITIK, RELIGION      In days  of horrifying conflict there was quite a jolt in a confrontation between Stephen Hagan’s  resplendently silver-suited Frederick the Great a…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 06:16AM
Wednesday, October 18, 2023

REVIEW: A View From The Bridge, Chichester Festival Theatre ✭✭✭✭ by Libby Purves

By Libby Purves Our very own theatreCat Libby Purves reviews Arthur Miller's A View From The Bridge playing at the Chichester Festival Theatre. This post REVIEW: A View From The Bridge, Chic…

SOURCE: britishtheatre.com at 02:32AM
Tuesday, October 17, 2023

OWNERS Jermyn st Theatre by Libby Purves and Friends

PROPERTY RAGE FROM ANOTHER AGE Here’s a curiosity from 1972;  an early , rarely-seen Caryl Churchill play revived  with dashing elegance under the Jermyn’s Artistic director Stella Pow…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 06:18PM

A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE Chichester Festival Theatre by Libby Purves and Friends

GRIM AND PURE BY THE DOCKS, PITY AND POETRY    The lawyer Alfieri, prowling in memory round Arthur Miller’s stark  tale of immigrant longshoremen on the 1940’s Brooklyn docks,  speak…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 06:12PM
Monday, October 16, 2023

A VOYAGE ROUND MY FATHER touring by Libby Purves and Friends

A LEARNED FRIEND REMEMBERED      Rumpole of the Bailey is occasional comfort-viewing in our house, thanks to Talkingpicturestv repeats. John Mortimer’s  portrait of the old barrister a…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 07:12AM
Saturday, October 14, 2023

REVIEW: Sunset Boulevard, Savoy Theatre ✭✭✭✭ by Libby Purves

By Libby Purves Our very own theatreCat Libby Purves reviews Jamie Lloyd's new production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Sunset Boulevard at the Savoy Theatre. This post REVIEW: Sunset Boulevard, …

SOURCE: britishtheatre.com at 06:03AM
Friday, October 13, 2023

SUNSET BOULEVARD. Savoy theatre WC2 by Libby Purves and Friends

ITS THE PICTURES THAT GOT SMALL? Not if Lloyd can help it. It felt  strange to see this in the bowels of a gala-night Savoy, only a week or two after our local arts centre showed the  1950…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 04:16AM
Sunday, October 1, 2023

PETER PAN GOES WRONG touring by Libby Purves and Friends

IT’S BACK, THROUGH THE NURSERY WINDOW, STILL FLYING       Just to reassure you:  this offshoot from Mischief, the team who brought you the perennial  Play-goes-wrong, is still a lot o…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 08:50AM
Thursday, September 28, 2023

CLOSE UP Menier, SE1 by Libby Purves and Friends

  THE TWIG WHO BRANCHED OUT      We get up to speed on the period,  with irresistible tracks from the golden age of pop: Beatles, Stones, Animals.   Onstage is a photographer’s white…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 05:33PM
Tuesday, September 26, 2023

OCTOPOLIS Hampstead Theatre by Libby Purves and Friends

A TANKFUL OF EMOTIONAL TENTACLES       Where better than Hampstead to watch the interplay of cutting-edge science with emotional intensity and philosophical unanswerables?  Upstairs we h…

SOURCE: theatrecat.com at 05:38AM

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