The Reviews – Christmas 2017



Image courtesy of Wikimedia

Hamilton: An American Musical

Victoria Palace Theatre, London


“I cannot overstate how exceptional Hamilton is. Every part of it works. Seeing it was an experience I will never forget, and I only wish I could see it for the first time again. Despite its subtitle ‘An American Musical’, its celebration of immigrants, and presentation of a nation unsure of its identity have profound relevance in Brexit Britain. Hamilton is mandatory viewing, you have no excuse not to be in the room where it happens.” – Jonathan Herbert

Image courtesy of West Yorkshire Playhouse

The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe

West Yorkshire Playhouse


“It could have been epic, and it does have some brilliant moments but ultimately this production fails to capture the magic of Narnia. I was disappointed with this production, especially because there were areas of such promise. The snow scenes when the stage was cloaked in billowing sheets were beautiful, with the dancers climbing up the sheets being simply wondrous. The play was let down by its performance in the round, which forced  director Sally Cookson’s style to become even more minimal.” – Jonathan Herbert

Image courtesy of LUTG

LUTG: Arcadia

The Storey


“LUTG make use of their time on stage. Their lively performance displays a professionalism in its understanding, a touch of humour in its presentation, but most of all an enmeshing of the new and the old to show that nothing is truly that different after all.” – Ruth Walbank

Image courtesy of LUTG

LUTG: Macbeth

Nuffield Theatre


“Overall the play was magnificent; a refreshing adaptation of a Shakespeare classic. Both Macbeth and Lady Macbeth were outstanding; particularly considering it was some of the actors’ first performances with LUTG. Macbeth was an incredible lead, with the King’s descent into madness expertly portrayed – the dagger scene was especially powerful. Macbeth’s leading lady did not fall short here either with the iconic ‘out damned spot’ scene perfectly capturing the mania of guilt that overcomes Lady Macbeth” – Siobhan Regan


The Dukes


“Marcquelle Ward carried out the role of Aladdin in a refreshingly modern and amusing manner, breakdancing and rapping through our expectations of our traditional protagonist and bringing a playful swagger to the character. I thoroughly enjoyed this performance from beginning to end, a clever twist on the traditional plot, with brilliant jokes, songs and dance moves!” – Jess Renyard

Image courtesy of Manchester Royal Exchange

Guys and Dolls

Manchester Royal Exchange


“The Royal Exchange’s Christmas production of Guys and Dolls takes a bold resetting to the streets of Harlem, with an all black cast. Yet, the utter charm of Frank Loesser’s musical remains, quirkily staged among the Exchange’s round stage. The play is all the more relevant today, depicting how love can still win among harsh living conditions and political turmoil.” – Toby Cooke

Les Miserables

Queen’s Theatre, London


“In its 33rd year, Les Mis is still going strong. Some of the current cast lack the presence their characters need, but the strength of the score speaks for itself.” – Jonathan Herbert

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