Theatre streaming: Hampstead Theatre's I and You starring Maisie Williams to be available on Instagram

If like me, you are missing your theatre fix then next week you can watch Hampstead Theatre's 2018 production of I and You for free.

 

I&You Production Image5 Photo Credit Manuel Harlan
I & You, Hampstead Theatre. Photo by Manuel Harlan.

Directed by Ed Hall and starring Game of Throne's Maisie Williams and Zach Wyatt, Lauren Gunderson's play about youth, friendship and living life to the full and will be available on Instagram for 7 days.

The Hampstead production was specially performed, filmed and edited for Instagram’s mobile video platform IGTV, during its run at the theatre, and was previously broadcast for free from 30 November to 3 December 2018.

I&You Production Image 1 Photo Credit Manuel Harlan
I & You, Hampstead Theatre. Photo: Manuel Harlan

It will be made available again on IGTV from 10 am Monday 23 March until 10 pm 29 March via @hampstead_theatre or @lalatellsastory (Lauren Gunderson).

Running Time: IGTV Video Part 1 - 30 minutes/IGTV Video Part 2 - 55 minutes

There is more and more theatre becoming available online either for free or via subscription and earlier this week I compiled a list of plays and some other theatre-related things to do.

I'm going to be updating it over the weekend as more stuff has subsequently become available, if I've missed something, let me know in the comments.

I&You Production Image 5 Photo Credit Manuel Harlan
I & You, Hampstead Theatre. Photo: Manuel Harlan

I've set up a new category - Streaming - to make it easy to find your theatre entertainment while we are on social distancing rules.

Stay safe and well. We'll get through this x


Video: This Sunday's theatre question is about theatre in these worrying and strange times

Don't know about you but I'm feeling really weird and unsettled by what is going on in the UK and globally at the moment with the coronavirus.

Everything seems to be happening so fast, just on Friday Poly and I were talking about when theatres are likely to have to close and what we were going to do in the meantime.

Let me know your thoughts in the comments ⬇️⬇️⬇️⬇️⬇️.

Missed a Sunday theatre question? Here's are the first two I posted:

The question about unexpected audience experiences.

The question about directors.

The question about which theatre production you'd revive?

If you want to see more of my videos, including my 60-second reviews, follow my YouTube channel, like my Facebook page or follow me on Instagram, whichever is your favourite platform 🤓.

 

Review: Spy Plays, Above The Stag - sophisticated gay spy thrillers

Spy plays by David Thame are two pieces based on real events, 55 years apart and linked by themes of espionage and gay liaisons.

Spy Plays programme

The first, London/Budapest, is set in 1955 where successful gay author Adam (Guy Warren Thomas) picks up handsome young airman Reg (Max Rinehart) at a sauna and takes him home.

Adam is erudite and eloquent, quick and observant but perhaps not quick enough - or maybe he doesn't want to see?

Flashbacks reveal more about his background, including a friendship with Guy Burgess who defected to the Soviet Union, which give the authorities enough grounds to be suspicious of his loyalties.

But while Adam may not be as innocent as he claims to be, is Reg being equally honest?

The tension mounts, is the sex functional, a ruse or is there something more, will this liaison end in the usual way?

Kompromat, which was first performed at the Vault Festival last year, has similar tensions although the narrative is reversed starting with final events so the question is how it got to that point.

It is set in 2010 and inspired by the death of GCHQ employee Gareth Williams whose body was found in a sports bag in his Pimlico flat while he was on secondment to MI6 in London. 

Tom (Warren Thomas) is the brainy country bumpkin for whom the freedom and accessibility of London's gay scene have made him joyously wide-eyed, naive or purposefully unobservant?

Continue reading "Review: Spy Plays, Above The Stag - sophisticated gay spy thrillers" »


Review: Uncle Vanya, Harold Pinter Theatre - Richard Armitage 'magnetic', Toby Jones 'endearing', Aimee Lou Wood 'adorable'

Richard Armitage's Astrov is looking at Aimee Lou Wood's Sonya, a wave agony and confusion on his face. It is approaching the culmination of what is a charged, layered and yet very funny Uncle Vanya, a production in which not a character is wasted.

19.-Richard-Armitage-and-Aimee-Lou-Wood-in-Uncle-Vanya-c-Johan-Persson
Richard Armitage and Aimee Lou Wood in Uncle Vanya. Photo: Johan Persson

Rarely has Chekhov made me laugh this much and yet equally been heartwarming and sad. 

Conor McPherson's adaptation, as directed by Ian Rickson, elevates the piece into an ensemble tragi-comedy without detracting from the protagonist Vanya played by Toby Jones.

I cared about the characters in a way that I haven't before. I confess, I generally find Chekhov's characters difficult to care about veering far towards the self-pitying for my sympathies.

But this production of Uncle Vanya balances humour and pain, despair and stoicism, laugh out loud moments with those that tug the heartstrings. The woman sat behind me was sobbing all the way through the final scene.

Continue reading "Review: Uncle Vanya, Harold Pinter Theatre - Richard Armitage 'magnetic', Toby Jones 'endearing', Aimee Lou Wood 'adorable'" »


Video: This Sunday's theatre question is about whether you've had an unexpected, unscripted audience experience

With live performance, stuff doesn't always go smoothly or to plan. There is a rogue prop, a trip, a cough and occasionally those unexpected incidents spill out into the audience.

So, my Sunday theatre question is whether you've had something happen to you while sitting in the audience or have seen it happen to someone else.

My own 'that wasn't meant to happen to me' experience was while watching Teddy Ferrera at the Donmar Warehouse (review here if you are interested).

Continue reading "Video: This Sunday's theatre question is about whether you've had an unexpected, unscripted audience experience" »


Review: Colin Morgan and Roger Allam, A Number, Bridge Theatre - everything counts in the 60-minute clone drama

You can tell an awful lot about Colin Morgan’s characters in A Number by the way they drink milk and eat biscuits - there is quite a bit of biscuit eating during Caryl Churchill's hour-long play about cloning.

A Number poster Bridge Theatre

The subtle costume changes, personality shifts and reactions to 'father' Salter's (Roger Allam) explanation of his past the signifiers that, while the looks and DNA are the same, 'life' has created three different people.

The biscuits and milk demonstrating, at times, familiarity with the setting, comfort or awkwardness. And, perhaps, a common, inexplicable character trait shared by his clones.

Giving A Number a domestic setting (the set changes are great) is an important and interesting choice by director Polly Findlay, the previous production I saw felt more clinical with minimal set.

Family drama

It makes the sci-fi premise - a father cloning his son - more of a family drama throwing the emphasis on the father-son relationship and parenting.

Continue reading "Review: Colin Morgan and Roger Allam, A Number, Bridge Theatre - everything counts in the 60-minute clone drama" »


Review: Chyna, Vault Festival - deaf teen's joyous portrayal of a year in her life

Chyna Brianna Harrison-Bell is a 15-year-old deaf performer and in her eponymous show, she documents a year in her life.

CHYNA vault festival 1
Chyna, Vault Festival 2020

Using video, dance, movement and sign-language and with the help of director Laurence Dollander, we are introduced to Chyna's life at home, at school and with her friends.

Her personality shines through in the expression of her movement and sign language, she is bubbly, funny, full of energy and ideas for the future.

Chyna is a keen observer of others, brilliantly portraying her friends' different personalities in a segment that culminates in an inventive solo re-enactment of a football match.

Continue reading "Review: Chyna, Vault Festival - deaf teen's joyous portrayal of a year in her life" »


Video: This Sunday's theatre question is all about directors

On this sunny Sunday morning, my theatre question is all about directors.

Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

If you want to see more of my videos follow my YouTube channel, like my Facebook page or follow me on Instagram, whichever is your favourite platform 🤓.

I'll still be posting reviews, thoughts and interviews here on the blog, of course.

 


Interview: 14-year-old deaf dancer Chyna: "I want D/deaf and hearing people to be equal and I want everyone to be kind to each other"

Chyna is 14, a dancer and deaf.  In an eponymously titled multimedia dance production, she takes the audience on a journey through her daily life. 

Chyna Vault Festival 1

Created in collaboration with Oak Lodge, a specialist school for the D/deaf in Balham and Deaf Dance Artist Chisato Minamimura, this performance aims at bridging the D/deaf and hearing communities. Here she talks about how performance makes her feel and what it means to her and her hopes for the future.

 
Where did the idea come from and how did you create the piece?
 
Laurence [Dollander, the director] spoke to me about the project, she asked me a few questions, she wanted to incorporate being D/deaf and D/deaf empowerment to a live performance.
 
So I started to practise, I think we had that conversation back in September. I practised weekly during December and twice a week from January right through until now.
 
Soon it’ll be March when the performance is and I’ve been performing a lot, so it’s a long time and I’m very excited. I’ve progressed and practised a lot.

Continue reading "Interview: 14-year-old deaf dancer Chyna: "I want D/deaf and hearing people to be equal and I want everyone to be kind to each other"" »


Video: A question for a theatre free Sunday

There isn't much theatre on a Sunday so here's a question for you about the back catalogue of plays you've seen.

Would love to know your thoughts in the comments...

This video also marks my first daylight appearance 'on film'. I'm expecting a sweet spot of 'still light' post-show reviews around the 21 June.

If you want to see more of my videos follow my YouTube channel, like my Facebook page or follow me on Instagram, whichever is your favourite platform 🤓.