November 25th, 2012

London Theatre Recap

Magistrate starting John Lithgow. Technically this was still in previews, and it showed it. It's a delightful farce, but farces require exquisite timing and rock-solid delivery. This one was a bit rough in places. Still, it was a delightful show. I somehow managed to get one of the very best seats in the house at the last minute, even though the show was basically sold out.

Constellations was a weird piece. It's quirky and unique, and I wanted to like it more than I did. This review describes the show better than I can. I think the biggest stumbling block for me is that the character who was a researcher in quantum cosmology came across as ditzy.

Twelfth Night starring Stephen Fry and Mark Rylance was an absolute delight! It's being done with an all-male cast, per tradition. It's an exceptionally good production, but the best part of it was that we had on-stage seats. Each side of the stage had a two-story seating box with two rows of eight seats on each level, so that part of the audience was at eye level and only a few feet (or sometimes less) from the action. Before the show, the woman in front of us was handed a prop by one of the cast members, and instructed to hand it to him during the show at a specific time. I can't speak highly enough of the show, or of seeing it from that perspective.

Uncle Vanya was a very good production of the show, but I was sleepy and dozed off intermittently.

All That Fall is a Beckett play that was written as a radio drama. Apparently the Beckett estate has refused to allow it to be staged, but Trevor Nunn talked them into it by staging it as though the actors were performing a radio drama. Eileen Atkins and Michael Gambon were both fabulous in their leading roles.

Loserville is the last show that I saw. I wanted to add a big splashy musical to the lineup, and this was what I chose. The reviews weren't the most flattering, so my expectations were low, but it was a fun and energetic show, if an eminently cliche-laden and unmemorable one. It was definitely a big splashy musical, though.

List of shows I've seen in London

On the plane home yesterday I started trying to recreate a list of all the shows I've seen in London. I'm certain this isn't a complete list, but it's most of them.

39 Steps
All That Fall
Beautiful Game
Billy Elliott
Blood Brothers
Bog of Cats (the Holly Hunter Irish thing)
Broken Glass
Cabaret
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
Complete Works of William Shakespeare, Abridged
Constellations
Copenhagen
Crazy For You
Driving Miss Daisy
Fame
Full Monty
Glorious (Florence Foster Jenkins show)
Guys and Dolls
Hairspray
Jerry Springer the Opera
Loserville
Love Never Dies
Magistrate
Mamma Mia
Mousetrap
Priscilla Queen of the Desert
Proof
Rocky Horror Show
Saturday Night Fever
Spamalot
Starlight Express
Streetcar Named Desire
Sweeney Todd
Swimming With Sharks
Tell Me On a Sunday
Twelfth Night
Uncle Vanya
Waiting For Godot
War Horse
We Will Rock You
Whistle Down the Wind
Wicked
Witches of Eastwick
Woman In White