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Assassins – Encores! Off-Center – New York City Center

Assassins, an Encores! Off-Center production, was performed at New York City Center. Star rating: five stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ Given today’s fraught political climate, it’s hard to imagine that that the powers at Encores! Off-Center didn’t have some sleepless nights about their decision to include John Weidman and Stephen Sondheim’s Assassins as part […]

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Fiddler On the Roof – Chichester Festival Theatre

Fiddler On the Roof continues at the Chichester Festival Theatre until 2 September. Star rating: five stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ Who would have thought that a musical set in an Ukrainian Shtetl, that tells of the persecution and eviction of Jews from their homeland, would prove to be such a durable success. Such […]

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Interview – woman of a thousand voices Christina Bianco on loving UK audiences and plans for Little Voice on Broadway

YouTube sensation [23 million views worldwide] and woman of a thousand voices, CHRISTINA BIANCO is heading to Viva Blackpool for the final date of her UK tour. Despite being a solo performance, her unique vocal impression show fills the room with icons across every musical genre during An Intimate Evening With Christina Bianco. Christina has […]

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Guildford School of Acting – Fabulous 50

Fabulous 50 is performed by Guildford School of Acting musical theatre students at the Yvonne Arnaud Theatre until 22 July. Star rating: five stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ This brilliantly put-together celebration of the 50th anniversary of the University of Surrey by its current musical theatre students, both undergraduate and post-graduate, is a delight […]

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Grab ’Em By the Pussy – The Space

Grab ’Em By the Pussy was reviewed at The Space, London (the show also runs at The Monkey House in Camden from 9 to 12 August). Star rating: three stars ★ ★ ★ ✩ ✩ Writer Caroline Buckley has penned a comic-surreal response to President Donald Trump’s ghastly boast to Billy Bush, cousin of former […]

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Committee… (A New Musical) – Donmar Warehouse

Committee… (A New Musical) or The Public Administration and Constitution Affairs Committee Takes Oral Evidence on Whitehall’s Relationship with Kids Company continues at the Donmar Warehouse, London until 12 August. Star rating: two stars ★ ★ ✩ ✩ ✩ This evidence gathering session at the House of Commons select committee cries out for verbatim theatre. […]

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Fatherland – Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester

Fatherland continues at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester until 22 July (and also plays the Lyric, Hammersmith from 25 May to 23 June 2018 as part of LIFT). Star rating: three stars ★ ★ ★ ✩ ✩ The creative trio behind this innovative Manchester International Festival production set out their stall very early on. Frantic […]

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The Woman in White – revival to be staged at Charing Cross Theatre

Acclaimed director Thom Southerland (Titanic, Grey Gardens, Grand Hotel) is to direct the first ever revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Tony and Olivier Award-nominated musical The Woman in White. A tempestuous tale of love, betrayal and greed, adapted from Wilkie Collins’ haunting Victorian thriller, this is the premiere of Andrew Lloyd Webber and David Zippel’s […]

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Broadway musical Fun Home to open at Young Vic in June 2018

The Young Vic will host the UK premiere of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical Fun Home, by Jeanine Tesori and Lisa Kron, from 18 June to 1 September 2018 (press night is 27 June). Fun Home, based on Alison Bechdel’s celebrated 2006 graphic novel, made its debut at The Public Theater, New York in October […]

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Yank! at the Charing Cross Theatre – exclusive new images

Off-Broadway musical Yank! has transferred to London’s Charing Cross Theatre this summer just months after its acclaimed UK premiere run at Manchester’s Hope Mill Theatre. Here’s a look at Musical Theatre Review official photographer Roy Tan’s exclusive production images. Second World War gay love story Yank! continues at the Charing Cross Theatre until Saturday 19 August. The musical has a book […]

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Me the People: The Trump America Musical – The Triad Theatre, New York

Me the People: The Trump America Musical continues at The Triad Theatre, New York. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ Political comedy has reached new levels of brazenness with the ascension of real estate mogul Donald Trump to President of the United States. The new satirical revue, Me the People: The Trump […]

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Yank! – Charing Cross Theatre

Yank! continues at the Charing Cross Theatre, London until 19 August. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ 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 […]

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He Shoots! He Scores! – A Musical With Balls – Above The Stag

He Shoots! He Scores! – A Musical With Balls continues at Above The Stag, London until 20 August. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ Whatever you may think of the sport, football is probably the game that’s most often been tackled in musical theatre. There’s Lloyd Webber’s Beautiful Game of course and […]

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Drawing the line – why Dear Evan Hansen’s Ben Platt has got his priorities right

Musical Theatre Review editor Lisa Martland writes… I am not a stranger to fandom, I vividly recall having posters of 1980s pop stars on my bedroom walls. And as my passion for theatre, and musicals in particular, grew, I wasn’t a complete stranger to the Stage Door after a performance – shyly standing in a […]

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What the Ladybird Heard – Lyric Theatre

What the Ladybird Heard continues at the Lyric Theatre, London until 10 September. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ If you go a-burgling in your stripy top with your swag bag you will get caught and sent to prison. That’s the lightly presented moral message of Julia Donaldson and Lydia Monks’ immensely […]

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The Wind in the Willows at the London Palladium – exclusive new images

Adapted for the stage by the team of Julian Fellowes, George Stiles and Anthony Drewe, the major new musical theatre adaptation of the family classic The Wind in the Willows has sped into the London Palladium. Here is a selection of brand new exclusive images from Musical Theatre Review’s official photographer Roy Tan. Rufus Hound […]

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Guildhall School of Music and Drama – Crazy For You

Crazy For You, performed by Guildhall School of Music and Drama’s final-year graduates, continues at Silk Street Theatre, London until 12 July. Star rating: five stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ Every year the same verdict on a Guildhall School musical: lift this show lock, stock and barrel a couple of miles across London to […]

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Royal Academy of Music – Love’s Labour’s Lost

Love’s Labour’s Lost was performed by the Royal Academy of Music’s Musical Theatre Company at Hackney Empire, London. This review refers to the cast at the Saturday evening performance (Cast A). Star rating: five stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ The lofty heights of Shakespearian adaptation have famously permeated the Broadway canon to its very […]

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First look at Louise Redknapp and Will Young in Cabaret tour

Here is the first look at ex-pop star and Strictly favourite Louise Redknapp (making her stage debut as Sally Bowles) and former Pop Idol Will Young (once again playing the Emcee) in this autumn’s nationwide tour of Rufus Norris’ acclaimed revival of Cabaret. Opening at the New Wimbledon Theatre on Thursday 21 September, Norris’ multi […]

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Sunset Boulevard UK and Ireland tour – full casting details

Full casting has been revealed for the forthcoming UK and Ireland tour of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s award-winning musical Sunset Boulevard. Directed by Nikolai Foster, the tour will open at Curve on Saturday 16 September 2017 (press night is Thursday 28 September). Joining the previously announced Ria Jones as Norma Desmond and Danny Mac as Joe […]

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Shit-faced Showtime – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz – Leicester Square Theatre

Shit-faced Showtime continues at the Leicester Square Theatre for three more Sundays in July (9, 16 , 23).. Star rating: three stars ★ ★ ★ ✩ ✩ It was back in August 2015 when Musical Theatre Review last reviewed Shit-faced Showtime at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, branding the production as “one of the wildest, most […]

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Book Review – Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 – Steven Suskin and Dave Malloy

NATASHA, PIERRE & THE GREAT COMET OF 1812 – Steven Suskin and Dave Malloy (Sterling Books – ISBN: 9781454923282) The musical of this same name is currently playing to capacity audiences on Broadway, starring Josh Groban and Denée Benton. So, what better tie-in than a gorgeously produced tome which takes you through the whole process […]

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CD Review – Comrade Rockstar – Studio Cast

COMRADE ROCKSTAR – Studio Cast (SimG Records – SimGR-CD033) Comrade Rockstar is the latest offering from SimG Records. Written by Julian Woolford and Richard John, this is a musical based on the life of Dean Reed – known in the 1980s as the Soviet Elvis. I was a little wary at first because I am […]

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CD Review – Hello, Dolly! – 2017 Broadway Cast

HELLO, DOLLY! – 2017 Broadway Cast (Masterworks Broadway – 88985405922) At times like this I wish more than anything that I lived in New York. I would love to actually see this production onstage. Perhaps by now you may have gathered that I am in love with this recording of the 2017 Broadway cast of […]

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CD Review – Cockeyed Optimist – Jenn Gambatese

COCKEYED OPTIMIST (Songs of Rodgers and Hammerstein) – JENN GAMBATESE (Jay Records – CdJAY1447) To my shame I had never heard of Jenn Gambatese before being sent this CD to review. I now know she played Jane in Disney’s stage musical version of Tarzan on the Great White Way, Glinda on a national tour of […]

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Book Review – Breaking and Entering – A Manual for the Working Actor – Philip Carlson

BREAKING AND ENTERING: A Manual for the Working Actor – Philip Carlson (Opus Books – ISBN: 978-1-62316-078-4) Philip Carlson was the first agent to sign Philip Seymour Hoffman, Billy Crudup, Liev Schreiber, Claire Danes, Idris Elba, Kyra Sedgwick, Adrian Grenier and Paul Giamatti. He has represented Viola Davis, Kathy Bates, Brian Dennehy, and William H. […]

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Superhero – Southwark Playhouse

Superhero continues at the Southwark Playhouse, London until 22 July. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ 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 […]

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An Evening With Robert Meadmore, Elaine Delmar and Jamie Safir – The Pheasantry

  An Evening With Robert Meadmore, Elaine Delmar and Jamie Safir was performed at The Pheasantry, London. Star rating: three stars ★ ★ ★ ✩ ✩ There’s no place quite like The Pheasantry in Chelsea. At once tiny, but able somehow to seat up to 90, plus their pizzas, plus a baby grand, it bustles […]

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Liza’s Back! (is Broken) – Trevor Ashley – Underbelly Festival

Liza’s Back! (is Broken) continues at the Underbelly Festival,  Southbank, London until 2 July. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ Australian performer and female impersonator Trevor Ashley, returning to London once again in the persona of Liza Minnelli, delivers a brilliant tour de force performance that combines superb singing with wicked and […]

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The Wind in the Willows – London Palladium

The Wind in the Willows continues at the London Palladium (booking until Saturday 9 September 2017). Star rating: three stars ★ ★ ★ ✩ ✩ Appearing at last weekend’s benefit concert for the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire, composers George Stiles and Anthony Drewe introduced themselves as: “the chaps with two musicals in the […]

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Lorna Dallas – Home Again – Live At Zédel

Lorna Dallas performed her show Home Again at Live At Zédel, London. She also brings the show to the venue on Tuesday 4 July. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ London fell in love with American singer and actress Lorna Dallas and she with the city in 1971 when she sang the […]

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Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill – Wyndham’s Theatre

Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill continues at the Wyndham’s Theatre, London until 9 September. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ Finally, after a year’s delay while its star produced an unexpected baby, the legendary Audra McDonald’s hypnotic re-creation of jazz singer Billie Holiday’s decline just a few months before her […]

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Interview – Scott Hunter on telling the ‘beautifully human’ story of Yank! at the Charing Cross Theatre

Off-Broadway musical Yank! will transfer to London’s Charing Cross Theatre this summer for a seven-week season from 3 July to 19 August, just months after its acclaimed UK premiere run at Manchester’s Hope Mill Theatre. SCOTT HUNTER will reprise his role as Stu in this poignant love story based on the true, hidden history of gay […]

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London celebrates West End Live 2017

London theatre is celebrating following the triumphant West End LIVE 2017, which saw hundreds of thousands flock to Trafalgar Square [exclusive images form our official photographer Roy Tan]. Now in its 13th year, the event has become one of Europe’s largest free performing arts festivals. The event is organised by Westminster City Council and the […]

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Cream – Canal Cafe Theatre

Cream continues at the Canal Cafe Theatre, London every Sunday at 7pm until 23 July. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ So what makes a good musical? Whatever it is, The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, Matador and Lord of the Rings didn’t have it. This ingeniously engaging revue picks songs, some of them […]

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The Quentin Dentin Show – Tristan Bates Theatre

The Quentin Dentin Show continues at the Tristan Bates Theatre, London until 29 July. Star rating: three stars ★ ★ ★ ✩ ✩ This show’s tagline promises the show will be this generation’s Rocky Horror Show, but the premise of the show has more similarities with Richard O’Brien’s less successful sequel, Shock Treatment. Nat and […]

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Interview – Simon Lipkin gets Ratty in The Wind in the Willows at the London Palladium

SIMON LIPKIN is playing the role of Ratty in the major new musical theatre adaptation of the family classic The Wind in the Willows which has its official opening at the London Palladium this week. Based on Kenneth Grahame’s timeless novel, The Wind in the Willows has been adapted for the stage by the team of Julian […]

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Wicked Young Writer Awards – winners revealed

A seven-year old’s moving poetic tribute to his late aunt and a teenager’s short story tackling the difficult subject of mental health were among the winning works in the seventh annual Wicked Young Writer Awards. The winners were revealed at a special ceremony at the Apollo Victoria Theatre, the West End home of Wicked, attended […]

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Blondel – Union Theatre

Blondel continues at the Union Theatre, London until 15 July. Star rating: three stars ★ ★ ★ ✩ ✩ The knowledge that Blondel was Tim Rice’s first musical after his split with Andrew Lloyd Webber adds an extra piquancy to some of its knowing lines. Who needs lyrics, muses the show’s eponymous troubadour Blondel, when […]

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The Rise and Fall of Little Voice – Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough

The Rise and Fall of Little Voice continues at the Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough until 19 August (in rep). Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ Despite the disappointments of the all-star, 1998 film, the stage version of Jim Cartwright’s Little Voice continues to beguile the British public. The latest rendering, at the Stephen […]

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Bat out of Hell – London Coliseum

Bat Out of Hell continues at the London Coliseum until 22 August. Star rating: five stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ In what has to be one of the crazier pairings in the history of musical theatre, the London Coliseum, home of the English National Opera, plays host to Jim Steinman’s dystopian rock opera Bat […]

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Joanne Clifton and Ben Adams to star in Flashdance – The Musical UK tour

Flashdance – The Musical is to return to the UK for the first time since 2011, starring Strictly favourite Joanne Clifton and singer/songwriter Ben Adams. The show will arrive at Glasgow King’s Theatre on 5 August 2017 prior to an extensive UK tour. Strictly Come Dancing champion Joanne Clifton is also a World and European […]

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Exclusive interview and images – Michael Xavier is ready for his close-up on Broadway

Two-time Olivier Award nominee MICHAEL XAVIER has been enjoying his Broadway debut, playing the character of Joe Gillis opposite Glenn Close in Sunset Boulevard at the Palace Theatre, New York for a limited season (the production closes this weekend). He previously took on the role at the London Coliseum in April 2016. Next he joins […]

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Kenny Wax will be new SOLT president

Society of London Theatre (SOLT) has announced that Kenny Wax has been appointed as its new president. Wax brings extensive experience to SOLT, having produced plays, musicals and family theatre in the West End. His current London productions include The Play That Goes Wrong (also running on Broadway), The Comedy About a Bank Robbery and […]

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Five Guys Named Moe – casting for new London production

Casting has been revealed for the brand new production of Clarke Peters’ Olivier Award-winning and Tony-Award nominated musical, Five Guys Named Moe. The production will open on 14 September 2017 in a new temporary theatre in Marble Arch, London. Edward Baruwa will play Nomax and the ‘Moes’ will be played by: Ian Carlyle (Four-Eyed Moe), […]

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Bat Out of Hell – The Musical – final extension takes run to 22 August

The producers of Jim Steinman’s Bat Out of Hell – The Musical have announced a further extension to the run at the London Coliseum this summer. The production officially opened in London’s West End last night (Tuesday), and, due to overwhelming public demand, a further two weeks of extra performances have been added.  This will […]

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Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance – Urinetown

Urinetown was performed by Trinity Laban musical theatre students at Stratford Circus Arts Centre, London. This review refers to the cast at the Saturday evening performance. Star rating: four stars ★ ★ ★ ★ ✩ In many respects, Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis’ Urinetown constitutes the perfect choice for a conservatoire production, requiring its cast […]

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