All stories by John Chapman on BroadwayStars

Thursday, January 20, 2022

‘This ensemble piece is exceptionally well cast & full of energy’: EAST IS EAST – National Theatre At Home (Online review) by John Chapman

East Is East is a recent addition to National Theatre's At Home catalogue and only appeared as a live production back in October.

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Thursday, January 13, 2022

‘Ruth Wilson is strong casting in the central role’: HEDDA GABLER – National Theatre At Home (Online review) by John Chapman

Ruth Wilson is strong casting in the central role with a, for once, restrained Ivo van Hove directing.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Monday, January 10, 2022

‘Relentlessly upbeat & cheerful to watch’: ANYTHING GOES (Online reviews) by John Chapman

Light as a souffle but such a delight. It’s doubtful whether there has ever been a classier bit of froth than this Cole Porter show.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Wednesday, January 5, 2022

‘A modern fairy tale with attitude’: SHREK THE MUSICAL (Online review) by John Chapman

The Shrek franchise opts for a modern-day spin on the traditional form, undermining expectations and undercutting some of the more winsome aspects with one-liners and witty put-downs.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Thursday, December 30, 2021

‘I would like to see how this audio drama would play out onstage: WINTER SOLSTICE – BBC Sounds (Online review) by John Chapman

The holidays have always been a time of rich pickings for dramatists, bringing together people (pre-Covid at least) who probably avoid each other for the rest of the year.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Monday, December 20, 2021

‘What is unquestionably fabulous is the whole area of design’: DOCTOR WHO: Time Fracture – Unit Headquarters by John Chapman

A full-on immersive event - part play, part museum exhibit, part theme park ride and part party.

SOURCE: at 09:00AM
Wednesday, December 15, 2021

‘Enhanced by crisp editing & two towering performances’: DEATH OF ENGLAND: FACE TO FACE – National Theatre (Online review) by John Chapman

The Death Of England sequence by Clint Dyer and Roy Williams has had an interesting history. Starting life as a ten-minute microplay film courtesy of the Royal Court.

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Sunday, December 12, 2021

‘After The Hairy Ape, I approached this with a degree of trepidation’: ANNA CHRISTIE (Online review) by John Chapman

Anna Christie, which predates The Hairy Ape, won the 1922 Pulitzer prize for drama and therefore had to have something going for it.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Friday, December 3, 2021

‘Absolutely outstanding in just about every single aspect’: LIFE OF PI – West End by John Chapman

It’s only happened a handful of times in my theatregoing life, but at Wyndham's Theatre, I had the urge to leap to my feet and instigate a standing ovation. In fact, I felt that way as the…

SOURCE: at 05:00AM
Wednesday, December 1, 2021

‘Great writing can be interpreted & reinterpreted in any number of ways’: CONSTELLATIONS – Donmar Warehouse (Online review) by John Chapman

There's a world (indeed, a universe) of possibilities in this intriguing play about decisions and repercussions.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Sunday, November 14, 2021

‘A fine octet of actors work well as an ensemble’: INTO BATTLE (Online review) by John Chapman

Remembrance Day seemed a perfect moment to review a production set just before and during the First World War, Hugh Salmon's finely rendered Into Battle.

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Saturday, November 6, 2021

‘It’s a joyful piece of theatre to take us out of the misery of lockdown’: DOING SHAKESPEARE – Bridewell Theatre by John Chapman

The live version of Northern Comedy Theatre's lockdown Zoom hit sees Shakespeare diced, sliced and put through the mincer at the Bridewell Theatre.

SOURCE: at 06:00AM
Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Doing the interview with Doing Shakespeare’s comedy duo creatives by John Chapman

After becoming a fan of their online comedies during lockdown, I chat with Northern Comedy Theatre artistic director Shaun Chambers and writer David Spicer as they transfer their Zoom hit Do…

SOURCE: at 12:00PM
Friday, October 29, 2021

‘Edgar Allan Poe’s original texts are honoured in a solo tour de force’: ONE MAN POE – Online & touring by John Chapman

Stephen Smith of Threedumb Theatre is something of a Gothic horror aficionado, especially when it comes to the works of Edgar Allan Poe.

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Wednesday, October 27, 2021

‘The power to make memories is fundamental to being human’: TIMELESS (Online review) by John Chapman

Following a brief run at London's The Space and ahead of a tour, Brian Coyle’s 2018 one-man play Timeless was made available as an on-demand stream.

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Wednesday, October 13, 2021

‘Ensemble comedy in the British up-against-the-odds tradition’: GOING THE DISTANCE (Online review) by John Chapman

This latest star-studded digital offering from Henry Filloux-Bennett and the Lawrence Batley Theatre is a pleasing comedy about the tribulations of putting on a post-pandemic production.

SOURCE: at 09:00AM
Friday, October 8, 2021

‘Sombre mood, visual distortions, intense emotions’: THE HAIRY APE — Online by John Chapman

I remember a student I was once trying to get to read more saying “What’s the point, there are just too many books”. Perhaps I’m beginning to have the same reaction to digital theatr…

SOURCE: at 05:00AM
Thursday, September 30, 2021

‘Deals with some important issues’: MY BOY DANNY (Online review) by John Chapman

New online theatre material keeps popping up all the time – or at least it eventually comes to my attention which amounts to much the same thing; this latest one did so by a somewhat circu…

SOURCE: at 05:00AM
Wednesday, September 29, 2021

‘Far from the traditional’: SLEEPING BEAUTY ‘DREAM ON’ – Chickenshed Theatre (Online review) by John Chapman

It’s been a while since I’ve reviewed one of the many shows which youth theatre Chickenshed put out during the pandemic. In fact, their last released piece came out in May so apologies t…

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Tuesday, September 28, 2021

‘The monk playing an electric guitar is a more recent invention’: THE YORK MYSTERY PLAYS – BBC Sounds (Online Review) by John Chapman

It is not with a little sense of surprise that I found myself yesterday experiencing my 800th online production which is the subject of this review. Back in April 2020 I, probably along with…

SOURCE: at 09:00AM
Monday, September 27, 2021

‘I didn’t find that this production ever really took off’: MY NIGHT WITH REG — Online / Turbine by John Chapman

One of the huge advantages of online theatre over the last eighteen months or so has been being able to catch up with plays that any self-respecting reviewer should have seen but for whateve…

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Sunday, September 26, 2021

‘The Greek legend is more or less intact’: ORPHEUS (Online review) by John Chapman

The Greek myths have endured across the centuries partly because they are timeless stories that can be endlessly updated and reinvented.

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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…

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
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.*

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
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.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
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.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
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…

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
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…

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
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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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
Apr 28, 2022: Macbeth - Lyceum Theatre