Author: Georgina Wilson

(Tea) black or white?: “What Once Was Ours” at Pegasus Theatre

“You’re going to hear some things you agree with, and you’re going to hear some things you disagree with. Your job is to listen.” It might seem an obvious thing to say to a bunch of individuals about to transform into that harsh and untameable beast, a theatre audience, but on going into Zest Theatre and Half Moon Theatre’s co-production of What Once Was Ours, we were surprised and perhaps even a little alarmed to hear these words spoken before we entered the auditorium. What Once Was Ours is a tale of Brexit, racism, identity, family, class, and individuals...

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Harold Pinter’s ‘Betrayal’ at the Salisbury Playhouse: “that old itch”

Nobody likes pauses. Especially pauses in conversation where, staring into the dregs of a drink for inspiration, all remnants of stimulating or even mundane conversation seem to flee irretrievably into a mental void. An understated yet effective production of Harold Pinter’s Betrayal at the Salisbury Playhouse opens with just one such awkward moment, and tests us increasingly as the first scene goes on. If we sit naively in the audience expecting comfortable, constant action and narrative flow, we are just as betrayed as the men and women who play out their dysfunctional marital relations before us. It’s hardly surprising...

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‘Brexit the Musical’: The Rise of Political Musical Theatre

In among the delights of Buzz: A New Musical, (Fat Rascal Theatre), Trump’d (Two Thirds Comedy) and 2016 the Musical (Evolution Theatre), Brexit: The Musical is a member of the not-uncommon satirical-political-musical species at the Edinburgh Fringe 2017. Perhaps gentle political protesters of the creative sort are discovering the power of wrapping up their thoughts on the state of the world into rhyming couplets and delivering them through jazz-spread hands. Perhaps the wide-spread appeal of these musicals to the left-of-centre Fringe crowd (Brexit had a full house and a returns queue the night I was watching) encourages aspiring creatives...

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“I am not my reproductive system”: ‘Yerma’ at the Young Vic

“Regret – not now, maybe later”, says the unnamed Her (Billie Piper). She thinks it might be a good idea to try for children because… because they’ve got three floors in their newly-purchased house, because she’s thrity-two, because why not? This is only chapter one, and we’ve got a lot of regret to go. Yerma (meaning barren) was originally a 1934 play by Spanish writer Ferderico Garcia Lorca. It’s about a woman unable to conceive in a particular culture at a particular time. It’s also a personal tragedy, rendered timelessly relevant and planted firmly in the twenty-first century by...

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While We’re Here at the Salisbury Playhouse

“Would people recycle more, if there were bears?” Carol (Tessa Peake- Jones) asks her ex-lover Eddie (Andrew French). This flippant-sounding question contained within the opening scenes of Barney Norris’ nifty two-hander, While We’re Here comes in response to Eddie’s proposed plan of getting involved in “rewilding”: putting bears and wolves back into Scotland, or, in his words, pressing <undo> on all the havoc human nature has wreaked on the planet. Carol knows, and we soon suspect, that Eddie hasn’t seriously thought through how he might achieve this revival of lost natural habitats, just as he hasn’t seriously thought through...

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