All stories by Kris Hallett on BroadwayStars

Friday, February 15, 2019

‘A dense, thoughtful work that sometimes purrs’: BLUE DOOR – Bath ★★★ by Kris Hallett

Tanya Barfield’s Blue Door is a dense, thoughtful 85-minute work that sometimes purrs in the Ustinov Studio.

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Thursday, January 31, 2019

‘A constant frenzy of invention’: WISE CHILDREN – Touring ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

An adaptation of Angela Carter’s 1991 novel about a theatrical dynasty, spanning a century and loaded with Shakespeare, sex and song, Wise Children can exhaust in its constant frenzy of in…

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Thursday, December 27, 2018

‘The best fun you can have with your clothes on this Christmas’: OEDIPUSS IN BOOTS – Bristol ★★★★★ by Kris Hallett

The Wardrobe has done it again. Oedipuss In Boots is the best fun you can have with your clothes on this Christmas season, an adult festive delight that finds the specificity in silliness an…

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Saturday, December 22, 2018

‘There is greatness striding through the heart of it all’: A CHRISTMAS CAROL – Bristol ★★★★★ by Kris Hallett

There is greatness striding through the heart of Bristol Old Vic’s A Christmas Carol and it comes in the shape of Felix Hayes’ Ebenezer Scrooge.

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Thursday, December 20, 2018

‘Resolutely stays grounded’: THE BORROWERS – Bristol ★★★ by Kris Hallett

Tobacco Factory Theatres have well served Bristol festive audiences over the years, including one bona fide theatrical masterpiece in Sally Cookson’s Olivier Award-winning Cinderella. Alas…

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Thursday, November 29, 2018

‘It’s another Boswell triumph’: THE MODEL APARTMENT – Bath ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

Donald Margulies’ The Model Apartment is a typical choice for the Ustinov, a work whose meaning and its overall effect will continue to burrow under the surface of its audience members for…

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Tuesday, October 30, 2018

‘Promises to be real marmite’: TWELFTH NIGHT – Bristol ★★★ by Kris Hallett

If nothing else Wils Wilson has produced a rollicking evening of entertainment in Twelfth Night at Bristol Old Vic, even if it is only a surface level take on this most beguiling of masterpi…

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Monday, October 29, 2018

‘Nothing revelatory but provides a sugar rush nevertheless’: LA CENERENTOLA – Touring ★★★ by Kris Hallett

Private passions are the overarching theme of the Welsh National Opera autumn 2018 season, and these passions are at the fore of Joan Font’s frothy 2007 production of Rossini’s La Cenere…

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Wednesday, October 24, 2018

‘Twenty-five years on, still blazing a trail’: BEAUTIFUL THING – Touring ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

Twenty-five years after Jonathan Harvey’s Beautiful Thing premiered at the Bush Theatre, it’s clear that its writing still offers hope and enlightenment alongside a cracking yarn.

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Sunday, August 5, 2018

‘A celebration of all those who classify themselves as female’: MAKE MORE NOISE – Bristol ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

Marking 100 years since women were first granted the vote, it’s a celebration of the women who dared to be different, and a call to arms to finally eradicate gender inequality for good.

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Friday, July 27, 2018

‘Shakespeare done right, freshly minted, funny, accessible’: ROMEO & JULIET – Eastville Park ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

If Shakespeare promised his audience in the prologue of Romeo and Juliet two hours’ traffic of our stage’, Insane Root does one better and knocks out, probably the world’s most famous …

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Thursday, July 26, 2018

‘Well worth a watch, but won’t leave any lasting feeling’: SOUTH WESTERN – Bristol ★★★ by Kris Hallett

It has been a heady time for Bristol’s The Wardrobe Ensemble, their last two Edinburgh shows have won public acclaim and Fringe Firsts and the company is now taking up residency this Augus…

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Tuesday, June 26, 2018

‘Has lost none of the capacity to thrill & surprise’: WELCOME TO THEBES – Bristol ★★★ by Kris Hallett

Thebes is an epic undertaking that starts slowly but eventually finds its drive. Thousands of years later the Greeks have lost none of their capacity to thrill and surprise.

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Friday, June 15, 2018

‘A total-theatre instant classic’: A MONSTER CALLS – Bristol & The Old Vic ★★★★★ by Kris Hallett

Patrick Ness’ novel slips perfectly into Sally Cookson’s fertile theatrical imagination. Its split-focused tale of cancer wards and midnight hour fairy tales suits Cookson’s gifts, for…

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Sunday, May 6, 2018

‘Scalpel-sharp hour of theatre with issues’: LEMONS, LEMONS, LEMONS, LEMONS, LEMONS – Bristol ★★★ by Kris Hallett

If the production backs up a hunch that it is not quite a modern classic, it’s still a highly enjoyable take on a play that shows language is a right that shouldn’t be taken lightly.

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Saturday, May 5, 2018

‘An accomplished piece of directing’: A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE – Bristol ★★★★★ by Kris Hallett

The View From the Bridge is the show to proclaim loudly that Tobacco Factory Theatres is in safe hands and ready to sail into a golden future under its artistic director Mike Tweddle.

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Sunday, April 15, 2018

‘Director Michael Blakemore lets Puccini work his magic’: TOSCA – Touring ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

Michael Blakemore’s production of Tosca plays out with a straight bat, period appropriate, detailed sets and clear delineation of character. He lets Puccini work his magic, each act buildi…

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Monday, March 12, 2018

‘It is one of the best staging’s BOV has produced in the past few years’: THE CHERRY ORCHARD – Bristol ★★★★★ by Kris Hallett

This Cherry Orchard is a production that showcases Michael Boyd, his ensemble, Chekhov and Bristol Old Vic at its very best. I love the theatre when it’s this good.

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Wednesday, March 7, 2018

INTERVIEW: Julius D’Silva talks The Cherry Orchard by Kris Hallett

I caught up actor Julius D’Silva one lunchtime at Bristol Old Vic on a break from rehearsal to discuss his work on The Cherry Orchard, reuniting with director Michael Boyd

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Saturday, March 3, 2018

‘A solid rather than enlightening evening’: Macbeth – Bristol ★★★ by Kris Hallett

Macbeth is an obvious box office draw for the theatre and the work is fundamentally solid, but it’s hard to shake the feeling it’s all a little safe, except for one performance that Bris…

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Monday, February 26, 2018

‘A bit more music, a little less plot’: CRIMES UNDER THE SUN – Touring ★★ by Kris Hallett

New Old Friends latest Crimes Under The Sun, opening at the Ustinov before embarking on a lengthy UK tour, is, at least so far, a night distinctly under-nourished, under-written and under-re…

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Friday, February 23, 2018

‘A work that in an era of #MeToo has become ever more complex’: THE TAMING OF THE SHREW – Bristol ★★★ by Kris Hallett

all in all, it’s a very solid take on a work that in an era of #MeToo has become ever more complex. Working with an accomplished director as Bill Alexander is obviously paying off.

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Wednesday, February 14, 2018

‘Soapy construct is elevated with physicality of breathtaking beauty’: THINGS I KNOW TO BE TRUE – Bristol ★★★ by Kris Hallett

It’s rare for a new production to be demonstrably better than its source text but this one by Frantic Assembly’s Things I Know To Be True by Geordie Brookman and Scott Graham shows it ca…

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Sunday, January 14, 2018

‘An explosion is waiting to happen’: PUNK ROCK – Bristol ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

The sixth form common room in Simon Stephens pulsating Punk Rock is an incendiary point ready to spark. The seven sixth formers the play introduces us too are standing on an edge of a precip…

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Saturday, December 30, 2017

Kris Hallet’s Year In Review by Kris Hallett

This was a year where the work touring into Bristol and the work I saw in Latitude, London, the cinema and New York dazzled.

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Thursday, December 14, 2017

THE LITTLE MERMAID – BATH ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

Writer Bea Roberts has subtly altered the tale within the overall framework, and as a result, you watch it not knowing exactly where it is going to end up. A happy ending is likely guarantee…

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Monday, December 11, 2017

SNOW GLOBE – Bristol Old Vic ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

For Kid Carpet’s latest show for the younger generation at BOV is packed full of questions like this. Children’s theatre may be seen as the poor relation to the more grown up stuff by so…

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LITTLE MATCH GIRL & OTHER HAPPIER TALES – Touring ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

As Black Friday and New Year bashes grow exponentially, child poverty in the UK is on the rise. The Little Match Girl may have her origins in the Victorian era and snow flecked tales of Hans…

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Saturday, December 9, 2017

BEAUTY & THE BEAST – Bristol ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

If Christmas shows are measured by the smile it puts on our faces and the gales of laughter elicited from the younger ones, then this is a stone-iron smash.

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Sunday, November 19, 2017

How to Disappear Completely & Never Be Found – Bristol ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

Funny how some plays can disappear completely and take a while to be found. When Fin Kennedy won the John Whiting award for this work, not one theatre had responded to its open submission.

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Sunday, November 12, 2017

THE TIN DRUM – Touring ★★★★ by Kris Hallett

Never let it be said that Cornish theatre company Kneehigh lack in ambition. Gunter Grass’ The Tin Drum has accrued significant cultural acclaim since its publication in 1959, gaining its …

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All that Chat

Oct 06: Slave Play
Feb 01: The Minutes
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