All stories by Ian Foster on BroadwayStars

Thursday, April 27, 2017

SHOWSTOPPER – West End by Ian Foster

After their residency at the Apollo, the Showstopper team have skipped along to the Lyric where they have been performing their brand of improvised musical on a random selection of Mondays, …

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SPRING OFFENSIVE – Clapham Omnibus by Ian Foster

Victoria Willing's Spring Offensive is a spikily fresh take on the First World War and its enduring legacy, a bold move for the Clapham Omnibus and one which does pay some dividends.

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Wednesday, April 26, 2017

THE BRAILLE LEGACY – Charing Cross by Ian Foster

Blinded in a childhood accident, Louis Braille's keen intelligence saw him ruffle feathers at the Royal Institute for Blind Youth where he resided, mainly because prevailing societal attitud…

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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

RADIEUSE VERMINE – Leicester Square by Ian Foster

Directed once again by David Mercatali, assisted here by Flore Vialet, the play is currently previewing at the Leicester Square Theatre in their lounge space, ahead of playing the French Fri…

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Sunday, April 23, 2017

GUARDS AT THE TAJ – Bush Theatre by Ian Foster

Inspired by the legend, for which there is no factual basis, that seventeenth century Mughal emperor Shah Jahan ordered that the hands of all the craftsmen who were involved in the construct…

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Saturday, April 22, 2017


Anne Brontë might not be the most heralded of her sisters but that is to underestimate the different way in which she expressed herself. The striking feminism of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall…

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Bridge Theatre’s inaugural season: exciting but too white by Ian Foster

Nicholas Hytner and Nick Starr have announced the opening programme for their The Bridge Theatre venture – the 900-seat commercial venue near to Tower Bridge which marks their re-entry int…

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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

DIMINISHED – Hampstead Downstairs by Ian Foster

In Polly Sullivan's starkly uncompromising arena, designed in the round and directed by Tom Attenborough, we first witness a psychiatric session between the high-functioning Mary and her cle…

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AUSTENTATIOUS – Leicester Square Theatre by Ian Foster

A monthly micro-review from There Ought to be Clowns.

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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

MISS NIGHTINGALE – The Vaults by Ian Foster

It's fascinating to be able to revisit shows along their developmental cycle. I first saw Miss Nightingale in its initial chamber-musical incarnation at the King's Head back in 2011 and sinc…

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THREADS – Hope Theatre by Ian Foster

We talk about broken hearts at the end of relationships oh so easily, but what if it was actually true, what if a break-up manifested physically on the person left behind? That’s one of th…

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Saturday, April 15, 2017


Sadly, their current revival of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying - the first major one in this country since its 1963 premiere - falls on the side of the fatally old-fashione…

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Thursday, April 13, 2017

ONE LOVE: THE BOB MARLEY MUSICAL – Birmingham Rep by Ian Foster

There's much to enjoy in One Love: The Bob Marley Musical, not least the joyous celebration of some of the most enduringly famous music in the world. And writer and director Kwame Kwei-Armah…

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Monday, April 10, 2017

42ND STREET – West End by Ian Foster

In the rush to dole out the five star reviews that seem de rigueur for any big musical these days (22 for An American in Paris so their new poster shouts proudly), there appears to be a will…

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Saying farewell to Tim Pigott-Smith, The Report & Woyzeck by Ian Foster

The news of Tim Pigott-Smith's passing at the age of 70 yesterday was a terrible shock, not least because he was still in a rich creative vein - a tour of Death of a Salesman was scheduled f…

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Sunday, April 9, 2017

POSH – Pleasance by Ian Foster

Laura Wade's Posh first appeared in 2010 at the Royal Court, again in 2012 in the West End, and then in cinemas as The Riot Club in 2014 - each time piercing something of the privilege aroun…

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TAMBURLAINE – Arcola by Ian Foster

I'm fully on board with Yellow Earth Theatre's objectives of identifying and investing in British East Asian emerging and established actors, writers and directors, so it does pain me a litt…

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Saturday, April 8, 2017

Re-reviewing two American classics by Ian Foster

"It's an honour just to be nominated..." Come award season, these words are often heard but you do have to wonder what it feels like to be the only member of a four person ensemble that isn'…

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Friday, April 7, 2017

CONSENT – National Theatre by Ian Foster

It's black and white - no means no. That should be enough right? Except all too often, sadly it isn't, and the many different ways in which this is true form the bedrock of Consent, Nina Rai…

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Monday, April 3, 2017

SEA FRET – Old Red Lion Theatre by Ian Foster

Designer Rūta Irbīte converts the stage into a section of the Suffolk coastline that writer Tallulah Brown grew up around and under Simon Gethin Thomas' sun-bright lighting and Daniel Balf…

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SPEECH AND DEBATE – Trafalgar Studios by Ian Foster

An opportunity to see this play in dress rehearsal was snaffled away from me at the last minute so stubbornly, I'd opted not to see it. But the offer of a friend's spare ticket and the good …

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CHINGLISH – Park Theatre by Ian Foster

Riffing on the chuckles that come from mistranslated menus and signs (I swear, it is one of my favourite things to do in touristy abroad), Chinglish follows the efforts of an American busine…

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Saturday, April 1, 2017

CUSTODY – Ovalhouse by Ian Foster

One of the most appallingly striking statistics around police brutality in the UK is that there has not been a single prosecution for homicide for a death in custody for over 30 years and a …

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THE MUTANT MAN – Space Arts Centre by Ian Foster

I do admire a play - and a production - that isn't afraid to make its audience work. Christopher Bryant's The Mutant Man relays the true story of Harry Crawford, a man accused of murder, a w…

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Friday, March 31, 2017

THE LIFE – Southwark Playhouse by Ian Foster

There's a moment early on in The Life where Sharon D Clarke's been-around-the-block-and-then-some Sonja has a moment akin to Jenna Russell's 'The Revolutionary Costume for Today' in Grey Gar…

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Thursday, March 30, 2017

ADAM & EVE AND STEVE – King’s Head by Ian Foster

If you were so inclined, you could rip into Adam & Eve…and Steve for its tendency towards dramatic inconsistency and slight musical blandness but as Beelzebub pops up to tell us early…

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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

THE FROGS – Jermyn Street Theatre by Ian Foster

Another way of looking at it is that you need to kiss a lot of frogs to find a prince and if this isn't an outright amphibian, it's also by no means royalty. Loosely based on a 405 BC play b…

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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

OTHELLO – Shakespeare’s Globe by Ian Foster

In light of Roman Tragedies reminding us of the vast potential of what Shakespeare can be rather than the tendency towards the ‘proper’ readings of his work that we tend to get here in t…

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How to get tickets for the sold-out Angels in America by Ian Foster

Tickets for Angels in America sold out very quickly- a mark of the excitement for this 25th anniversary production of Tony Kushner's epic, but the folks at the National have come up with thr…

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Monday, March 27, 2017

Round-up of theatre things: Obsession & Janet Suzman as Rose by Ian Foster

Fresh from taking the Barbican by storm (again) with Roman Tragedies, Ivo van Hove and Toneelgroep Amsterdam will be returning to London next month with a version of Luchino Visconti's 1943 …

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Saturday, March 25, 2017

42 reasons to see 42nd Street by Ian Foster

I was lucky enough to be invited to the first preview of 42nd Street at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane and whilst any official opinions about the show are under embargo until press night, I th…

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Mar 26: Sweat - Studio 54