Review: NWF – Polly

✮✮✮ Howard Coase shines as writer of Polly, part of the OUDS New Writing Festival at the Burton Taylor Studio. He has delivered a witty script, but the production occasionally misses a beat. The play, under the direction of Daniel de Lisle, revolves around the dysfunctional relationship of Harry and Natalie, who have the parish […]

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Review: NWF – Lover’s Suicide

✮✮✮ Lover’s Suicide – Jamie Biondi’s entry into the OUDS New Writing Festival – toes a difficult line. It gives time to the dramatic-potency of its characters’ self-destructive impulses, but also injects some much needed dark comedy into what could otherwise be, let’s be honest, a bit of an emotional slog. As the title would […]

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Breathing corpses comes to life

✮✮✮✮ Contemporary playwright Laura Wade stands accused of a facility for language – something any company aiming to put on a performance of one of her plays should monopolise. Without understanding the need to play on the nuances of dialogue that permeate her writing – without pivotal pauses, stutters, and crescendos – any performance would […]

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In his eyes it’s thought-provoking

✮✮✮ It’s safe to say that ‘In Her Eyes’ – a new hour-long student production boasting music and lyrics by Toby Huelin and direction by Lucy Fielding – is a show that doesn’t fool around.  Centering on the inner life of a lonely teenage girl named Freddie (Rachel Coll) as she embarks on a romantic […]

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Tartuffe tantalises and tickles the humour glands

✮✮✮✮ Tartuffe is “the patron saint of swindlers” – a charming rogue who takes centre stage in Molière’s farcical satire, charming his way into possession of a gullible aristocrat’s daughter, wife, and entire estate. Despite the opulent de rigueur eighteenth-century attire and self-consciously versified speech, Molière’s Tartuffe is a timeless treatment of hypocrisy, gullibility, and […]

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Endgame – Praise for the Ultimately Absurd

✮✮✮ “Finished, it’s finished. Nearly finished.” The opening line of Beckett’s absurdist icon Endgame is a neat illustration of the play’s style: razor-sharp, black-as-hell wordplay and self-reference combined with an utterly bleak existential outlook. It is a titanic text to attempt to do justice, but Will Felton’s production with Fools and Kings Theatre attacks it […]

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