All stories by John Chapman on BroadwayStars

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

‘Know us by our courage, not by our fear’: VOICES FROM UKRAINE – Finborough Theatre (Online Show) by John Chapman

The second pair of plays from #FinboroughFrontier’s quartet of pieces #VoicesFromUkraine reflecting on the situation in the war torn nation is now available. They join the first couple to …

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Friday, June 24, 2022

‘There’s enough here to keep the listener enthralled’: THE MACHINE STOPS (Online Show) by John Chapman

In The Machine Stops E. M. Forster unusually abandons his general milieu of the genteel classes and takes a look at a supposed future – the theme of connection, however, is still very much…

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Saturday, June 18, 2022

‘Not an easy watch but it is a vital one’: GRENFELL – Tabernacle (Online Show) by John Chapman

Broadcast on the fifth anniversary, one cannot but conclude that Grenfell, Scenes From The Enquiry is a devastating critique of a system which put money before people and allowed a tragedy w…

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Wednesday, June 15, 2022

‘A glorious romp’: TONY! [THE TONY BLAIR OPERA] – Park Theatre by John Chapman

Voted back into power three times, Tony Blair left office with the accusations of being a manipulative liar ringing in his ears – not that that has ever slowed down the current incumbent. …

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Monday, June 6, 2022

‘A reminder of unresolved issues’: KABUL GOES POP – Touring by John Chapman

Based on a true story Kabul Goes Pop: Music Television Afghanistan concentrates on the period in the early 2000s when the Taliban in Afghanistan had been pushed back following Western libera…

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Wednesday, June 1, 2022

‘Certainly a powerfully realised piece of drama’: MISSION – The Big House by John Chapman

Certainly a powerfully realised piece of drama, Mission at The Big House is all defiantly obscure, though it clicks into place eventually, and you cannot help but admire the skill that goes …

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Sunday, May 29, 2022

’An engaging premise’: 100 PAINTINGS – The Hope Theatre by John Chapman

What do you do when the artistic muse has deserted you? Or when it has never really arrived?

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Tuesday, May 17, 2022

‘There’s a big rush of energy any time the quartet of actors enter the space’: THE DWARFS – White Bear Theatre by John Chapman

Harold Pinter’s The Dwarfs is a fascinating glimpse into the development of one of the major playwrights of the 20th century and this production does it full credit.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Friday, May 6, 2022

’An interesting addition to the audio theatre scene’: FIZZY SHERBERT (Online Show) by John Chapman

All three of the short plays that feature in Fizzy Sherbet’s audio series centre on writer/performers who, not unnaturally, bring a depth of emotion to their own work.

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Saturday, April 23, 2022

‘Phoebe Marshall & Kieran Dee are a classy double act’: Jo & Sam Find Themselves In Woking – Hen & Chickens Theatre by John Chapman

I’m not sure whether I’ve actually been to Woking. It’s that sort of place – although how I’d know that if I’ve never actually been there, I really couldn’t say. I suppose it�…

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Tuesday, April 19, 2022

‘Sondheim’s songs are the saving grace of this rather purposeless musical’: ANYONE CAN WHISTLE – Southwark Playhouse by John Chapman

One of Sondheim's earliest works Anyone Can Whistle has just opened at Southwark Playhouse. Notoriously a flop back in 1964, many have tried but few have succeeded in reviving its fortunes.

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Friday, April 8, 2022

‘George Kemp is excellent as Joe Orton’: DIARY OF A SOMEBODY – Seven Dials Playhouse by John Chapman

Diary Of A Somebody is credited to John Lahr, though technically he might be said to be the arranger/editor. For the actual words are those of Joe Orton as recorded in a journal that he deci…

SOURCE: at 11:00AM
Thursday, April 7, 2022

‘A real cheerer-upper of a show’: HMS PINAFORE – Wilton’s Music Hall by John Chapman

After a trying day (don’t ask), it was particularly pleasing therefore to unwind with Sasha Regan’s All-Male HMS Pinafore at Wilton’s Music Hall in the East End.

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Saturday, April 2, 2022

‘A gripping account with some knife-edge will-he-won’t-he moments’: THE RED – Original Theatre (Online show) by John Chapman

Having seen Marcus Brigstocke’s name attached to it, I instantly assumed this would be a broadly comic play that was strong on laughs and reasonably light on subject matter.

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
Friday, March 18, 2022

‘Like visitors at a zoo, we watch intently as the family’s background is forensically examined’: THE ANIMAL KINGDOM – Hampstead Theatre by John Chapman

Animal behaviour but within a human framework. This is a powerful new play from Ruby Thomas at Hampstead Theatre.

SOURCE: at 08:00AM
Saturday, February 12, 2022

‘A show that examines class quite candidly’: KIPPS – The New Half a Sixpence Musical (Online review) by John Chapman

Kipps – The New Half A Sixpence Musical is “new” in the sense that it’s an updated version of a musical first performed in the early 1960s to showcase the singing, dancing and banjo …

SOURCE: at 07:00AM
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.

SOURCE: at 07:00AM

All that Chat

May 30, 2023: Grey House - Lyceum Theatre
Jun 26, 2023: Just For Us - Hudson Theatre
Jul 24, 2023: The Cottage - Hayes Theater
Nov 16, 2023: Spamalot - St. James Theatre
Dec 18, 2023: Appropriate - Hayes Theater
Mar 07, 2024: Doubt - Todd Haimes Theatre
Apr 14, 2024: Lempicka - Longacre Theatre
Apr 17, 2024: The Wiz - Marquis Theatre
Apr 18, 2024: Suffs - Music Box Theatre
Apr 25, 2024: Mother Play - Hayes Theater
Jun 10, 2024: The Drama Desk Awards