All stories by Debbie Gilpin on BroadwayStars

Thursday, April 4, 2019

‘Raucous, ridiculous fun’: Shit-faced Showtime’s Oliver With a Twist – Leicester Square Theatre by Debbie Gilpin

The only thing that strikes me when I watch Shit-faced shows – it’s not my first – is that sometimes the off-kilter fun can feel a little forced.

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‘It feels like the show is reaching out to give you a big hug’: WISE CHILDREN – Coventry ★★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

My verdict? A show that is unabashedly in love with theatre, revelling in the curious mischief of Angela Carter’s novel – what a joy it is to dance and sing, indeed!

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‘A timely revival of a forgotten classic’: MAGGIE MAY – Finborough Theatre ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Lionel Bart and Alun Owen’s musical Maggie May first opened in London 55 years ago, when it made its debut at the Adelphi Theatre in September 1964 – despite its success it hasn’t been…

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Thursday, March 28, 2019

‘A Christie choose your own adventure with a dash of Cluedo mixed in’: MURDER SHE DIDN’T WRITE – West End ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

‘The Case of the Pink Wellington Boots with the Red Hearts’. Not the kind of title you’d expect to spring from Agatha Christie’s pen – instead, an evening of murder mystery hijinks…

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BWW Review: AFTER EDWARD, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse by Debbie Gilpin

During the latter part of this winter season, Shakespeare's Globe has been concentrating on Voices in the Dark Pride, Then and Now, with a production of Marlowe's infamous Edward II running …

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Wednesday, March 27, 2019

‘An explosive, relevant production’: LORD OF THE FLIES – Greenwich Theatre ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

I really can’t overstate how insanely great the choreography is in this production; it is such an incredible bonus that I know if I ever see another performance of Lord of the Flies withou…

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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

‘A stellar production of an intriguing play’: THE PRICE – West End ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

The Price is a stellar production of an intriguing play about family tensions – the set is breathtaking and Miller’s insights remain as perceptive as ever.

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Monday, March 25, 2019

‘Doesn’t quite live up to its promise’: OTHELLO – Union Theatre ★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Closing Phil Willmott’s ‘Enemies of the People’ 2019 Essential Classics season is Shakespeare’s classic Othello, marking the centenary of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, with events s…

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Wednesday, March 20, 2019

BWW Review: THE LIFE I LEAD, Park Theatre by Debbie Gilpin

Best known to many as Mr Banks in Mary Poppins, actor David Tomlinson actually had a quite extensive career on stage and screen - as well as more than his fair share of personal dramas. Jame…

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Friday, March 15, 2019

‘Full of energy & heart’: SPARKPLUG – Touring ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

“I’ve got two dads.” Playwright, actor and spoken word artist David Judge’s latest play SparkPlug is inspired by autobiographical events: his mother is white, his biological father i…

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Wednesday, March 13, 2019

‘Shame to be dropped out of a giggle so fast’: QUEEN C*NT: SACRED OR PROFANE? – Touring ★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Queen C*nt: Sacred or Profane? It’s a great, intriguing title, and the strapline promises even more: to let us watch Deborah Ward and China Blue Fish leave their husbands, practice witchcr…

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‘Touches, entertains & teaches’: A HUNDRED WORDS FOR SNOW – Trafalgar Studios ★★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

A Hundred Words for Snow is a perfectly crafted one-woman show that touches, entertains and teaches, as it explores grief and polar exploration – a charming performance from Gemma Barnett.

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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

‘Performed to Star Baker standard’: WAITRESS – West End ★★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Based on the 2007 film of the same name by Adrienne Shelly, the musical adaptation of Waitress made its Broadway debut back in 2016 and has now made the leap across the pond to London’s We…

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Sunday, March 10, 2019

‘Completely relatable to some and an eye-opener to others’: GOOD DOG – Touring ★★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Arinzé Kene’s one-man show good dog has been brought back by tiata fahodzi for a UK tour, directed by Natalie Ibu and starring RADA graduate Kwaku Mills.

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Tuesday, March 5, 2019

‘Wonderfully provocative while avoiding stereotypes’: LIPSTICK: A FAIRY TALE Of IRAN – Omnibus Theatre ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Luckily, Sarah Chew – writer and director of Lipstick: A Fairy Tale of Iran – confronts the schism in feminism between the east and west with humour, grace and heart.

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Regional theatre and Vicky Vox take centre stage at the WhatsOnStage Awards by Debbie Gilpin

We've had the film, TV and music awards, so now it's the theatre's turn to hand out some prizes. Once again, the Prince of Wales Theatre threw open its doors to some of the most popular prod…

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Tuesday, February 19, 2019

‘An essential piece of theatre done stunningly well’: RATTLED – Old Red Lion Theatre ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Something that always impresses me is when a play manages to get the line between tragedy and comedy exactly right; Rattled is disturbing and gripping, but it’s also very, very funny.

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Monday, February 18, 2019

‘Can’t fault the enthusiasm & commitment to the show’: CAN-CAN! – Union Theatre by Debbie Gilpin

Continuing Phil Willmott’s ‘Enemies of the People’ Essential Classics season for 2019 is a new musical, Can-Can!, following on from Arthur Miller’s An Enemy of the People.

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Saturday, February 16, 2019

‘The historic feel adds that extra bit of magic’: DRACULA – London Library ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

This new adaptation of the Dracula hints at a darker future, performed brilliantly by a cast of two – the historic surroundings of the London Library adds an extra bit of magic to proceedi…

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Friday, February 15, 2019

‘Quite a breath of fresh air’: AVENUE Q – Touring ★★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Irreverent puppet musical Avenue Q stands the test of time thanks to its outrageous humour and catchy songs – heartily recommended for anyone in need of a laugh!

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Wednesday, February 13, 2019

‘A dynamic production’: THE TEMPEST – Greenwich Theatre by Debbie Gilpin

Lazarus Theatre’s The Tempest is a dynamic production of a potentially tedious play, bound together in a stark & bold design – Alexander da Fonseca gives a standout performance.

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Tuesday, February 5, 2019

BWW Review: HOME, I'M DARLING, Duke Of York's Theatre by Debbie Gilpin

Beginning life at Theatr Clwyd last summer, Laura Wade's latest play Home, I'm Darling quickly transferred to the National's Dorfman Theatre and has now begun a limited engagement in the Wes…

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‘Every aspect is superbly well done’: THE RUFFIAN ON THE STAIR – Hope Theatre ★★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

The Ruffian On The Stair is a terrific introduction to Joe Orton with a superbly well done production of a lesser known play – the cast of three are absolutely spot on.

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Saturday, February 2, 2019

‘Something of an acquired taste’: CUZCO – Theatre503 ★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Overseas pieces are not a common sight in UK theatres, but Theatre503 is doing its bit to change that with their latest offering: William Gregory’s translation of the Víctor Sánchez Rodr…

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Friday, February 1, 2019

‘There’s no artifice here’: NO SHOW – Soho Theatre ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

No Show is no usual circus act – the strength and skill are there, in spades, but not so much the glitz and glamour.

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Friday, January 25, 2019

BWW Review: LEAVE TO REMAIN, Lyric Hammersmith by Debbie Gilpin

It's the end of an era at the Lyric Hammersmith, as it is Sean Holmes' final season as artistic director - but it has begun in terrific style with the premiere of a new play with music, writ…

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Tuesday, January 22, 2019

BWW Interview: Hiba Tawaji TALKS NOTRE DAME DE PARIS by Debbie Gilpin

On the eve of the return of Notre Dame de Paris to London - this time in its original French - I'm looking back to my time behind the scenes during its last few days in Paris. There I spoke …

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Friday, January 18, 2019

‘Truly apt for our unstable & changing world’: OUTLYING ISLANDS – King’s Head Theatre ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Last seen in London back in 2002 at the Royal Court (following a debut at Edinburgh’s Traverse Theatre), David Greig’s Outlying Islands makes a return to the capital, with Atticist’s n…

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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

‘Shows a different side to the #MeToo stories’: ANOMALY – Old Red Lion Theatre ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Following on from recent allegations, the #MeToo hashtag reappeared and the Time’s Up initiative was set in motion. Liv Warden’s new play, Anomaly, looks at a fictional scandal and its e…

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Monday, January 14, 2019

‘The absurdity of it all is where the play shines’: IN CONVERSATION WITH GRAHAM NORTON – Hope Theatre by Debbie Gilpin

In Conversation With Graham Norton explains itself fairly succinctly in its title – Mark desperately needs someone to talk to and the only person he can find happens to be a framed photo o…

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‘Truly gripping to watch’: AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE – Union Theatre ★★★★ by Debbie Gilpin

Opening up Phil Willmott’s ‘Enemies of the People’ Essential Classics season for 2019 is a new production of Arthur Miller’s An Enemy of the People, which is itself adapted from a pl…

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All that Chat

Oct 06: Slave Play
Feb 01: The Minutes
TBA: Blue