A Younger Theatre’s Managing Editor and Artistic Director share our Top Shows of 2013. We’ve scratched our heads and pored over our diaries, and here are the AYT Top 20 shows of 2013. Do you agree?

Metamorphosis at the Lyric

Eleanor Turney, Managing Editor:
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This year, I have seen 122 shows, mainly in Bath, Bristol, Edinburgh and London. Since I saw my last show of the year last night, I thought I’d do a small round-up of my favourites – do add comments with what I’ve missed! I’ve limited myself to 10 shows, but these are ones that have really stayed with me. In roughly chronological order:

Metamorphosis at the Lyric, Hammersmith. Profoundly disturbing and melancholy.

The Boy Who Kicked Pigs, Jackson’s Lane. Darkly hilarious, this adaptation of Tom Baker’s novel still makes me giggle/cringe thinking about it.

Proof, Menier Chocolate Factory. Further proof that Mariah Gale is a stunning actress.

Kate Tempest Brand New Ancients

Kate Tempest Brand New Ancients

Brand New Ancients, Bristol Old Vic and the  Traverse. Yes, I saw this twice. Yes, it was worth it.  Yes, Kate Tempest is amazing.

 Trash Cuisine, Tobacco Factory Theatre. Visceral  and upsetting and clever, Belarus Free Theatre’s  show was the highlight of Mayfest, for me.

 Chimerica, Almeida. Well-written, well-acted, well-  directed and well-designed. A triumph.

Fleabag, Underbelly. Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s solo, self-penned show marked her out as one to watch.


David Tennant as Richard II

David Tennant as Richard II

, Underbelly. My only 5-star show of the Fringe. I bloody loved it.

Antarctica, Bristol Old Vic. Hands-down winner of “most adorable show”. Just magical.

Richard II, Barbican. My favourite Shakespeare  play performed by one of my favourite actors. Happy sigh.


Fraulein Julie, Katie Mitchell

Katie Mitchell’s Fraulein Julie

Jake Orr, Artistic Director:
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Who knew that creating a list of 10 shows of the year could be so difficult? Thank heavens for my diary. Drawing up this list I was slightly surprised by the lack of fringe theatre that made me jiggle with excitement. Those smaller power-houses just weren’t making shows that stuck for me this year.

Fräulein Julie, Barbican. Directed by Katie Mitchell, this take on Strindberg’s Miss Julie used multiple cameras to create a live film crossed the possibilities of theatre and film. Mesmerising.

Brand New Ancients, Battersea Arts Centre. Kate Tempest. There really are no words to describe the elation you feel about her poetry and performance in Brand New Ancients.

Mission Drift

The TEAM’s Mission Drift

Mission Drift, National Theatre. I didn’t think a play with songs could give me such a thrill, oh how I was wrong. Every month I whip out The TEAM’s soundtrack and dance. So, so good.

The Drowned Man, Punchdrunk. It’s not the immersive experience or the story that gets me excited about Punchdrunk’s newest piece, it’s the imagination and set designers. Like going down the rabbit hole in Alice in Wonderland.

Where The White Stops, Underbelly / New Diorama. Antler Theatre showed me the potential of emerging work. I’ve seen this piece three times and everytime I find something new to enjoy. Fun, powerful and energised.

Solfatara, Summerhall. The Spanish theatre company Atresbandes knew what it was doing in subverting surtitles, creating a hilarious comedy at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Jo Bannon Exposure

Jo Bannon’s Exposure

Exposure, The Drill Hall / Forest Fringe. Jo Bannon’s Exposure lasts 10 minutes, but it is the most perfect 10 minutes in near-darkness you’ll experience in theatre.

Chimerica, Harold Pinter Theatre. Brilliant, brilliant play. Playwriting is a craft, and it was shown with such beauty in Chimerica.

Secret Theatre, Lyric Theatre. It’s not perfect, but Sean Holme’s radicalisation of what theatre can be through his Secret Theatre has to be in my Top 10.

American Psycho, Almeida Theatre. Right at the last minute, Headlong Theatre and Almeida Theatre give us this sexy, seductive and slick production. I practically orgasmed whilst watching it.

Do you agree with Eleanor and Jake’s Top 20 Shows of 2013? Leave us a comment below.