Author: Ruth Phillips

Out of the Wings and into the Spotlight: In Conversation with Natasha Barnes

Natasha Barnes hit the media in a major way when she stepped into the role of Fanny Bryce after Sheridan Smith was unable to perform, only 50 minutes before curtain up of Funny Girl. After receiving critical acclaim and 5 star reviews, she went onto to various other acting and musical theatre roles proving the testimony “a sensation in her own right”, she is now releasing her debut album Real. [1] Writer Ruth Phillips attended a media showcase for the upcoming album including a stunning performance from Barnes of some new work and some old musical favourites. Ruth interviewed...

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Action at a Distance: Deadly simple truths

Recommend at the 2017 Edinburgh Fringe by theatre critic Lyn Gardner Action at a Distance, a new play by Rory Horne, arrived at the New Diorama Theatre in November 2017 following their successful year. With a small cast of three and a minimal team behind the production of the show it is a demonstration of the incredible power of storytelling at its most pure. The play is a brutally honest exposure to the world of truths and lies, both personal and political. The plot focuses on the budding online romance of ‘out-of work plumber Chris’ (Rosa Caines) and data...

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Bucket Club’s ‘Fossils’: The Sound of Science

After successful runs of a show at Edinburgh Fringe and Brits on Broadway in New York, Bucket Club Theatre Company recently came to the New Diorama Theatre bringing bac ktheir hit show Fossils. The play follows scientist Vanessa (played by Helen Vinten) on her personal research project around the myth of the Loch Ness Monster. Combining innovative sound design and playful aesthetics the company delivers a rounded, wholesome account of personal struggle and (pseudo)scientific phenomena. Also fairly simple in plot and staging the show is carefully crafted for a wholesome, piece intertwined with some important issues such a women in...

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Can Women be Doctors?: Regenerating Doctor Who

Here is an anecdote from a friend: My sister, who is now actually a practicing doctor, when asked around the age of six by my dad what she wanted to be when she grew up said she wanted to be a nurse. When dad responded by asking why she didn’t want to be a doctor she said, “can women be doctors?” Representation is not isolated to our screens. It trickles down to infiltrate real people, real decisions, and real aspirations. Decisions made about a fantasy universe with endless realities both can and do matter to our here and now....

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Mental Health and Theatre: In Conversation with Isabelle Kabban

A new award has been introduced  for the Edinburgh Fringe this year, celebrating work that explores mental health.[1] The Mental Health Fringe Award[2] (which will be run by the Mental Health Foundation with the support of the Tron Theatre in Glasgow and the Scotsman newspaper) is open to shows of all styles and genres that explore issues around mental health. In recent years the topic has been a prominent theme of many notable and critically acclaimed shows at the such as Bryony Kimmings and Timothy Grayburns, Fake It ’Til You Make It and Tom Gill’s Growing Pains. One theatre...

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Movement in Translation in The Cherry Orchard and The Storm

Movement is as central in conveying meaning from the stage to the audience as any script. I came to realise this during my work as a Movement Director for the production of three Russian plays performed at the University of East Anglia in December 2016, including both The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov and The Storm by Aleksandr Ostrovsky. The Cherry Orchard tells the story of an aristocratic family whose wealth is under threat, as they are torn between their attachment to the past and the irresistible pull of the future. The Storm follows Katerina, a young married woman...

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