The Marriage of Kim K, Arcola Theatre, London ★★

Reviewed for Musical Theatre Review: Marrying classical opera buffo to 21st century pop culture will always be a risky task. The Marriage of Kim K, which opens the Arcola’s 2017 Grimeborn season, takes The Marriage of Figaro and butts it against the world of reality TV star Kim Kardashian, creating a sung-through musical which is…

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Mosquitoes, National Theatre, London ★★★★★

Reviewed for The Reviews Hub: At the Large Hadron Collider at CERN’s Switzerland, two particles flung in opposite directions around the underground toroid structure will reunite and collide. Although the force involved may be little more than that of two mosquitoes flying into each other, muses Lucy Kirkwood’s dazzling new play, the repercussions are huge…

The Hired Man, Union Theatre, London ★★★

Reviewed for Musical Theatre Review: Melvyn Bragg’s 1969 novel The Hired Man was the first of three novels to chart the lives of the Cumbrian Tallentire family. Starting at the turn of the 20th century, the name derives from the head of the family, John Tallentire (Ifan Gwilym-Jones) who must endure the “hired market”, the…

Twilight Song, Park Theatre, London ★★★★

Reviewed for The Reviews Hub: Best known for his play My Night With Reg, Kevin Elyot’s writing for the stage was dominated by a sense of yearning, and the deleterious effects of love. Completed before his death in 2014, Twilight Song illustrates, in its premiere production at the Park Theatre, an echoing of the same…

Dorrance Dance – ETM: Double Down, Sadler’s Wells, London ★★★★★

Reviewed for The Reviews Hub: Tap dance has traditionally been the reserve of the nostalgic musical. In the West End right now, 42nd Street is the perfect evocation of this, its whole ensemble tap routines being the show’s biggest draw. On a smaller scale, Charing Cross Theatre’s Yank! includes several tap routines as it tells its story in…

Yank!, Charing Cross Theatre, London ★★★★

Reviewed for Musical Theatre Review: A half century before the US military service policy ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’, relationships between gay men in the US Armed Forces were, if not exactly tolerated, tacitly acknowledged. In the mix of adrenaline and testosterone, frustrated men occasionally turned to each other for relief – the crime was to…

Certain Young Men, National Theatre, London ★★★

Reviewed for The Reviews Hub: Part of the National Theatre’s Queer Theatre season of rehearsed readings, Peter Gill’s Certain Young Men is a collection of scenes, some related but many not, about the lives of four gay male couples. Written at the end of the 1990s, some five years before the Civil Partnerships Act gave the first…

Superhero, Southwark Playhouse, London ★★★★

Reviewed for Musical Theatre Review: Not every superhero wears a cape, and not everyone who wears a cape is a superhero. In the Southwark Playhouse’s new one-man musical Superhero, directed by Adam Lenson, Michael Rouse plays a man who struggles to be either. Rouse narrates the story of Colin predominantly in flashback, as he pleas…