All stories by John Chapman on BroadwayStars

Friday, September 24, 2021

‘A feminist fairy tale which entertains first and educates second’: MUSTARD DOESN’T GO WITH GIRLS — Online by John Chapman

Although I always have the best of intentions about promoting and reviewing online young people’s theatre, I’d be the first to admit that it has often taken a back seat. I’ve now tackl…

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Thursday, September 23, 2021

‘There’s a musical theatre dream team’: CLOSER THAN EVER – Broadway HD (Online review) by John Chapman

As it’s a recorded stream, you’re at liberty to choose your own encore moments and replay any numbers which particularly take your fancy – and there are bound to be several of those.*

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Sunday, September 19, 2021

‘Innovative & intriguing piece of theatre making’: CAN I LIVE – Complicité (Online review) by John Chapman

The twin themes of social justice and climate activism are explored in this piece from Fehinti Balogun/Complicité.

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Wednesday, September 15, 2021

‘In the tradition of the choose your own adventure books’: THE RIME OF THE SECOND SISTER / FOUND – Online by John Chapman

Do these two pieces push the idea of audio theatre to its limits? Probably and the results are highly pleasing

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‘An interesting set of responses to some classic plays’: YOUNG VIC DIGITAL (Online review) by John Chapman

The first tranche of Young Vic Digital consists of pieces written in response to a main house production. Here they are in chronological order of the time the original plays were written.

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Sunday, September 12, 2021

‘The highs & lows of auditioning, rehearsing & performing’: A THEATRICAL LIFE (Online review) by John Chapman

Siobhan Bremer’s A Theatrical Life is very much a piece which will more readily appeal to members of the profession and those interested in the mechanics of the business called show.

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Friday, September 10, 2021

‘Just don’t expect your journey to be a comfortable one’: THE CONTAINER – Young Vic / Digital Theatre (Online review) by John Chapman

Site specific theatre hasn’t been easy over the last eighteen months – in fact you can take out the first two words of that statement. It’s been tricky enough getting regular venues op…

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Thursday, September 9, 2021

‘A mesmeric 45 minutes about humanity’: MEET ME AT THE EDGE (Online review) by John Chapman

And so, to a piece which has long been on my “to see” list but which has kept getting bumped as a whole host of other stuff claimed my attention. As Meet Me At The Edge is a filmed accou…

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Wednesday, September 8, 2021

‘A vivid snapshot’: THE COVID-19 TRILOGY (Online review) by John Chapman

It was just about a month ago that I observed that considering the dominant story of all our lives for the last 18 months has been the pandemic, there haven’t really been all that many di…

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Tuesday, September 7, 2021

‘A highly visual show’: FLUX – DIGITAL (Online review) by John Chapman

Although I’d still give a best company name prize to recent Edinburgh appearees (??!) Expial Atrocious, running them a close second is Smoking Apples – though I’d be hard pressed to id…

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Wednesday, September 1, 2021

‘Gentle, life-affirming production’: Around The World In 80 Days – Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds (Online review) by John Chapman

Around The World In 80 Days is best known for the iconic 1956 David Niven film rather than the original novel by the prolific French writer Jules Verne; this version seeks to restore the ori…

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Monday, August 30, 2021

‘Proves to be as entertaining as it can be’: SYD – Edinburgh Fringe (Online review) by John Chapman

Arthur Smith pays homage to his (extra) ordinary Dad in Syd which premiered at 2018’s Fringe and is now an online show recorded at Falmouth and being streamed via the Pleasance.

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Sunday, August 29, 2021

‘Thoroughly gruesome but mesmerising’: UNDER THE FLOORBOARDS – Edinburgh Fringe (Online review) by John Chapman

The real life figure of Ed Gein looms large in horror films and literature. Most famously he was the direct inspiration for Norman Bates in Psycho and his terrible influence can also be foun…

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Wednesday, August 25, 2021

‘A celebration of human indomitability’: LOOK, NO HANDS – Edinburgh Fringe (Online review) by John Chapman

A warm and entertaining solo play, Lila Clements’ Look, No Hands has some distinctive features which marks it out from many other confessional shows of a similar type.

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Monday, August 23, 2021

‘Taking off in an unexpected direction’: The Little Glass Slipper As Performed By The Queen of France & Her Friends / Metamorphosis – Edinbu by John Chapman

Two well known tales with a twist: The Little Glass Slipper As Performed By The Queen of France And Her Friends and Metamorphosis. The second piece now tops my personal Edinburgh Fringe onli…

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Saturday, August 21, 2021

‘Ploughing the particular furrow of absurdist theatre’: MURMUR / WILD WAXFLOWER – Camden Fringe (Online review) by John Chapman

Without much more than a two line description in the Camden Fringe brochure, I plunged headlong into two wildly different but experimental pieces, Murmur and Wild Waxflower.

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Friday, August 20, 2021

‘Bolstered by some good renditions of songs of the era’: The Girl Who Jumped Off The Hollywood Sign / My House – Edinburgh Fringe (Online review by John Chapman

I set off for Hollywood, California via Edinburgh, Scotland and Adelaide, Australia. No, I haven’t finally lost it, this was my online trip in both time and place courtesy of the Edinburgh…

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Thursday, August 19, 2021

‘Two ecology conscious plays’: Tree Confessions/We’ll Dance On The Ash Of The Apocalypse – Camden Fringe (Online review) by John Chapman

Though the big guns which are at the Edinburgh Fringe have now been rolled out, it’s taking some time to pin down what to aim for there. Meanwhile its somewhat smaller sibling is continui…

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Saturday, August 7, 2021

‘Hit all the right notes’: JAM TART / LEMON KURD – Camden Fringe (Online review) by John Chapman

Jam Tart and Lemon Kurd are two accomplished monologues written by Rhiannon Owens and Nick Maynard which fit together neatly having complementary subject matter and a not dissimilar tone at …

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Friday, July 30, 2021

‘A glorious stream of silliness & jokes’: MURDER ON THE 12:32 TO BRISTOL (Online review) by John Chapman

Gigglemug Murder Mysteries borrow their titles, if not their characters and plots, from the works of Agatha Christie. The first of these is the recently released and enticingly titled Murder…

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Thursday, July 29, 2021

‘Intriguing revival’: MASKS & FACES – Finborough Theatre (Online review) by John Chapman

This is Masks And Faces (full title: Masks And Faces or Before And Behind The Curtain) his 1852 play set in the world of the theatrical profession which the Finborough rediscovered and produ…

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Sunday, July 25, 2021

‘Engaging, entertaining & challenging’: SIREN (Online review) by John Chapman

Viper Squad writer James Dillon’s new show Siren takes the tropes of the sci-fi horror genre (there’s a heavy debt to Alien here) and throws the audience into the middle of the action.

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Friday, July 23, 2021

‘Uncannily accurate’: QUENTIN CRISP: NAKED HOPE – Stream Theatre (Online review) by John Chapman

The fourth and final Cultural Recovery Fund funded show from production company Seabright has been, like its predecessors, filmed at Wilton’s Music Hall before a live audience and is being…

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Thursday, July 22, 2021

‘It is an experiment which OTC should consider repeating’: A COLD SUPPER BEHIND HARRODS – Original Theatre Company (Online review) by John Chapman

In what I think may be a first, Original Theatre Company has released a filmed-as-live, onstage rehearsed reading in the shape of A Cold Supper Behind Harrods.

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Monday, July 19, 2021

‘Valuable additions to the expanded series’: QUEERS – Old Vic (Online review) by John Chapman

The first new piece for Queers references a moment in history while the second takes a broader more contemporary sweep of recent events but what unites them is that they present the experien…

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Thursday, July 8, 2021

‘Deservedly gets a standing ovation’: BLACK IS THE COLOR OF MY VOICE – Stream Theatre (Online review) by John Chapman

What makes Black Is The Color Of My Voice stand out from the crowd is Apphia Campbell’s performance which is multi-layered, dynamic and assured and, when she’s singing, spine-tingling.

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Tuesday, July 6, 2021

‘Timely piece that deserves to keep having success’: A Super Happy Story (About Feeling Super Sad) – Silent Uproar (Online review) by John Chapman

Silent Uproar’s cabaret style show A Super Happy Story (About Feeling Super Sad) is a highly sensitive and nuanced performance which nails the debilitating effects of what is still a misun…

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Saturday, July 3, 2021

‘A crack team of acting talent has been assembled’: THE GIRL NEXT DOOR – Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough (Online review) by John Chapman

The piece in question is Alan Ayckbourn’s The Girl Next Door which harks back to earlier plays such as Whenever, Miss Yesterday, Surprises and especially Communicating Doors in its central…

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Monday, June 28, 2021

‘Chance for a wider audience is undoubtedly a good thing’: LEATHER – Finborough Theatre (Online review) by John Chapman

The Finborough Theatre’s latest show to hit the ether is Leather which is now available on demand. It is a play which isn’t for the faint hearted and comes trailing clouds of notoriety a…

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Thursday, June 24, 2021

‘Concentrate on the actual experience which is thoroughly enjoyable’: KNOT – Darkfield (Online review) by John Chapman

Simply called Knot, this is a three-part play which requires the listener to be at a specified (though general) location at a certain time, then to connect to an app and let Darkfield do the…

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Wednesday, June 23, 2021

All that Chat

Sep 14, 2021: Chicago - Ambassador Theatre
Oct 17, 2021: Dana H. - Lyceum Theatre
Mar 28, 2022: Plaza Suite - Hudson Theatre
Apr 07, 2022: The Minutes - Studio 54