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Tag Archive | "Pleasance Theatre"

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Review: The Final Revelation of Sherlock Holmes, Pleasance Theatre

Posted on 13 February 2014 by Jemma Anderson

The Final Revelation of Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock Holmes seems to be the man of the moment. Whilst the BBC delight its audiences with the modern day Sherlock, American viewers embrace CBS’s Elementary, and both sides of the Atlantic enjoy Robert Downey Jr. as the star of the budding franchise. You’d be forgiven for thinking that Arthur Conan Doyle’s books about the Victorian detective and his sidekick could be adapted no further. But then along came Let Them Call It Mischief theatre company, which has created a new piece about Conan Doyle’s most famous literary character.

In 1930, at 221b Baker Street, things are not going particularly well. Sherlock’s drug use is beginning to spiral out of control, whilst Watson tries to sell their stories of old cases to magazines to make ends meet. When Holmes envisages a ‘perfect crime’ that is sure to make their fortune, things take a turn for the worse. Watson is aggrieved that his loyal companion could have supposedly murdered anyone, and the pair battle over moral principles, their friendship and their work.

The play, which has been smartly written by Tim Norton, seems to be his love letter to the famous stories, but also a great profile of the writer himself. Norton has created a play that captures Conan Doyle’s spirit well within his own interpretation of the characters, and yet throws in a whole bunch of Conan Doyle’s biographical facts that will delight the fanatic fans in the audience – including an allusion to his ventures into spirituality, and writings on the supposed Cottingley Fairies.

The two characters that appear on stage for all of the two hour show are lovingly played by Nico Lennon and James McGregor, as Sherlock and Watson respectively. Norton’s writing plays very heavily on the implied homosexual relationship between the two characters – evident in the original – and it provides some of the biggest laughs of the night, especially from McGregor’s slightly camp, naïve Dr. Watson who at one point proclaims, “I’m down here anyway!” whilst shining Holmes’s shoes. McGregor shines in this role: a perfect mix of comedy and sincerity in equal measure. Lennon too holds his own as a very young Sherlock, a character that the audience never quite warms to, but are yet in awe of his brilliant mind.

The set has been cleverly designed on the Pleasance’s revolving stage by Ele Slade, which showcases both the infamous 221b front door and its Victorian interior. The lighting design, though subtle, illuminates the duo’s drawing room perfectly.

What director Danny Wainwright has managed to devise is a clever, affectionate gesture to a much-loved canon of work, and its iconic author. This play is bound to thrill audiences, especially fans of the country’s most treasured detective.

The Final Revelation of Sherlock Holmes is playing at the Pleasance Theatre until 2 March. For more information and tickets see the Pleasance Theatre website.

 

Jemma Anderson

Jemma is currently studying Drama, Theatre and Performance at Roehampton University. Between studying and reading about theatre, she also watches and reviews as Editor-in-chief of the Drama Department's newspaper, The Call.

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Ticket Offer: NSDF Award – Play For September and League of St George – 2 plays for £10

Posted on 20 September 2013 by A Younger Theatre

Our friends at the National Student Drama Festival have passed on this fantastic offer to see the NSDF Award winning shows Play For September and League of St George direct from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival at Pleasance Theatre. Read below to get the ticket offer, and see two fantastic shows.

 

Play For September and League of St George
Pleasance Theatre, Islington
25th – 29th September

Play For September

Play For September
7.30pm 

Produced by Lost Watch Theatre Company

Based on the writer’s own experience of abuse and grooming at school, this poignant and surprisingly funny play is a three hander about loyalties, friendship and not knowing where to turn. After the recent press uproar over teacher/pupil relationships Play for September offers an authentic insight into the dangers and vulnerabilities of youth.

Set in a Yorkshire comprehensive in September 2003 at the start of a new term, Elle and Kay waste time after school. But when wasting time leads to your teacher falling in love with you, they quickly discover how morals are not always clear cut, friendships are flimsy and loyalties can be as false as the man they call Sir.

 

 

League of St GeorgeLeague of St George
9pm

Produced by Bricks and Mortar Theatre

Deadend Dagenham 1976. Skinhead Adam lives a life of comradeship, excitement and power through the fascist brotherhood of the League of St George. However, he has a secret set to destroy everything. He is gay. Social and sexual identities collide violently in an equally violent world. All that’s left to ask Skin, Head or Heart? A loud live punk band throws you into the days of boots, braces and the moonstomp. With sensitive humour, a twisted love story and an oversized St George’s flag, Brick and Mortar Theatre bring you the League of St George.

The play won the King’s Head Stella Wilkie Award 2013 for new writing. Bricks and Mortar Theatre take inspiration from family anecdotes and social history and make tough topics charmingly engaging with their everyman voice, welcoming you to take another look at this murky subculture.

 

Ticket Offer

See both Play For September and League of St George for £10 (usually £15) when quoting NSDF13 in person or over the phone.

Pleasance Box Office: 020 7609 1800
www.pleasance.co.uk

A Younger Theatre

A Younger Theatre

A Younger Theatre (AYT) is a platform for young people to express their views on theatre and performance. The site is maintained, edited and published by under 26 year olds who all have a passion for theatre.

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Review: Laugh Your Farce Off

Posted on 05 June 2013 by Ruby Clyde

Laugh Your Farce Off

Farce is a celebration of the ridiculous: of insane plots, physical comedy, and crude humour. Laugh Your Farce Off wholeheartedly throws itself and its audience into this extravagant world. Although each short is written, directed and performed by different artists, they share a spirit of the absurd and high-energy slapstick.

The Pleasance Theatre is a lovely venue. Its large but simple space is perfect for the show, providing enough space for actors to run around a basic set that can serve any purpose. Three doors line the back of the stage: these help to maintain Laugh Your Farce Off’s breakneck pace as they are hidden behind, dashed through or thrown open to reveal a new character. For some of the shorts, further props were brought out and they were never superfluous, always serving some comedic purpose.

For the most part, the same can be said about the dialogue of Laugh Your Farce Off’s scenes. Writers Hannah Rodger, Charlie Partridge, John-Luke Roberts, Caitlin Shannon and Andrew Doyle hit the audience with as many jokes as possible, which keeps a low rumble of laughter going throughout the show.

With a show like this, the audience is almost as important as the performers. On the night I was in, the audience was very vocal and responsive, laughing, cheering and shouting out in shock freely. The experience had a festival feel to it, and will no doubt be perfect for the Fringe.

Without ruining the surprise of watching how delightfully surreal these stories become, Laugh Your Farce Off’s audience can look forward to a wonderful song about the dangers of science; the problems a glitchy playlist can bring to a sex party; and an antiques dealer stuffed under a table. The fun is in watching how these writers and directors have taken their shows from A to B: they never do it in quite the way you expect.

The performers relate well to the audience in a space small enough to have a pub atmosphere. Particular standouts for me include the surprisingly moving Robert Heard in ‘Bobby’s Orgy’, who manages to be a little bit heart-breaking despite the costume he winds up in. In the same short, Alice Marshall barely delivers a line that doesn’t draw laughs from the audience and her character’s aggressive sexuality is a little frightening even from several rows back. In ‘Last Manor Standing’, Hannah Barrie is hysterical to watch as she fends off a Lord’s jealous wife.

Laugh Your Farce Off is terrific fun to watch and the night has a friendly and exuberant vibe about it. True to the nature of farce, each script had the power to surprise and shock. Best of all, this is the sort of show where those on the stage seem to be having as much fun as the audience, as they push limits and chase after plots that spiral into the unexpected.

Laugh Your Farce Off is playing on Sundays at the Pleasance Theatre until 21 July. For more information and tickets, see the Pleasance Theatre website.

Ruby Clyde

Ruby Clyde

Currently studying English at UCL, Ruby Clyde has been going to theatre for longer than she can remember. Since these trips recently became voluntary and enjoyable, she has started writing about them. She is also a guitarist and is currently following far too many TV shows.

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Theatre news: Free tickets for LAMDA productions at Pleasance Theatre, Islington

Posted on 26 March 2013 by A Younger Theatre

Graduating students from LAMDA (London Academy of Music & Dramatic Art) will present Maxim Gorky’s Summerfolk and Mike Bartlett’s Earthquakes in London at the Pleasance Theatre in Islington.

Presented by students from the school’s Two Year Acting Course and Two Year Stage Management & Technical Theatre Course, these productions provide a unique opportunity to meet the future of theatre, film, television and radio. Tickets are also free of charge, so there really is no excuse not to go and see them both.

Summerfolk
by Maxim Gorky
An amateur production by arrangement with Rosica Colin Ltd
2, 4, 24 & 26 April | 7.30pm
5 & 25 April 2013 | 2pm

At the turn of the 20th Century a group of Russian friends retreat for their annual summer holiday in the countryside. United by their place in history as an emergent Russian middle class, but disparate in their political views and private lives, their friendship will never be the same again come autumn.

Maxim Gorky’s naturalistic masterpiece depicts Russia as it teeters on the edge of social upheaval – exploring the dreams, fears and vanities of one group of friends as they question their value in a transient society.

Earthquakes in London Photograph by Graham Michael (C) LAMDA Limited.

Earthquakes in London
By Mike Bartlett
An amateur production by arrangement with Nick Hern Books
3, 5 & 25 April 2013 | 7.30pm
4, 24 & 26 April 2013 | 2pm

How can you live in a state of constant impending catastrophe? Is hope possible, responsible even, when scientists and politicians are predicting an environmental apocalypse? Earthquakes in London tracks the tremors of hedonism, terror and activism through the lives of three sisters and their estranged, misanthropic father.

Written by the award-winning Mike Bartlett (Love Love Love), the play premièred at the National Theatre in 2010 to critical acclaim.

Tickets for both productions are free of charge and can be booked by visiting pleasance.co.uk/islington

A Younger Theatre

A Younger Theatre

A Younger Theatre (AYT) is a platform for young people to express their views on theatre and performance. The site is maintained, edited and published by under 26 year olds who all have a passion for theatre.

More Posts - Website

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