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Guardian 5 June 2014

Grit: The Martyn Bennett Story

By Keiran Hurley in collaboration with Cora Bissett. A Pachamama review.

IT BEGINS in darkness. Through brief bursts of light, we capture the fleeting movement of running figures as the acoustic strum and wailing lament of Martyn Bennett's Move gives way to the fuzzed-up urban rhythms that characterised the composer's thrilling fusion of the ancient and the modern. In bold capitals, the words "MOVE" and "SHIFT" flash across the back wall of Kai Fischer's open set.

Scotsman 26 May 2014

Commonwealth Games inspire sport and theatre link-up

Sports-themed shows in Commonwealth Culture 2014 programme and beyond.

THE COMMONWEALTH Games are still a couple of months away but the spirit of athleticism is already galvanising the world of theatre. Not only in the official Commonwealth Culture 2014 programme but also in outbursts of activity beyond, theatre makers are taking the idea of competitive sport and running with it. Some are also pedalling with it.

Guardian 25 May 2014

Woman in Mind

By Alan Ayckbourn. A Dundee Rep/Birmingham Rep review.

I RECENTLY spent a week in a hotel in Eastbourne. At the end of my stay, I felt that I had a better understanding of Alan Ayckbourn. Previously, I'd encountered his class of characters only on the stage. I'd half suspected that his particular breed of privileged home-counties ladies and blimpish retired colonels didn't actually exist for real. However, in Eastbourne, they certainly did. So it's all the more fascinating to be back in Scotland watching Marilyn Imrie's tremendous production of the playwright's 1985 comic drama and find her putting Ayckbourn's middle-class Englishness at one remove.

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Guardian 16 May 2014

Pressure

By David Haig. A Royal Lyceum/Chcichester Festival Theatre review.

WE'RE watching an action-adventure yarn. At stake is the very foundation of western civilisation. Time is running out and only one man can save the world. Except the hero is not Jack Bauer, running through the streets of London in 24: Live Another Day, but a portly blue-collar worker scribbling down numbers at a desk. More unlikely still, he is a weatherman.

Guardian 27 March 2014

The Secret Life of Suitcases

By Ailie Cohen and Lewis Hetehrington. An Ailie Cohen Puppet Maker/Unicorn theatre review

IN THE standard Kafkaesque nightmare, the hero always finds himself trapped in a hell of red tape with no chance of escape. The difference here, in this sweet-natured puppet fantasy for the over-fives, is that fastidious Larry rather enjoys his dreary desk job.Recalling one of Don Martin's long-faced cartoons from Mad magazine, this happy office worker taps away at his keyboard as he processes the steady flow of tickets that pop up in front of him. Such is his dedication to the task that his colleagues know to keep their distance. Larry's far too busy to break for coffee or lunch.

Variety 18 March 2014

New National Theater Trilogy and ‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ On Edinburgh Festival’s 2014 Slate

Launch of the Edinburgh International Festival

A HISTORICAL trilogy from two of Britain’s national theaters and a new stage adaptation of “All Quiet on the Western Front” are among the higher profile offerings on tap for the 2014 Edinburgh Intl. Festival, the three-week program of theater and music to which the simultaneous Edinburgh Festival Fringe was founded in response. This year’s edition, kicking off four days and one century after Britain declared war on Germany, focuses on the theme of military conflict, representing the eighth and final line-up of a.d. Jonathan Mills before he hands over the reins to his incoming replacement Fergus Linehan.

Guardian 17 February 2014

Musicals We Love: Blood Brothers

By Willy Russell. A Liverpool Playhouse review.

IF you ask a class of drama students why they chose their subject, a majority will answer with an anecdote about seeing a heart-stopping production at a formative age. For me, Willy Russell's Blood Brothers wasn't exactly that (when I saw it at the age of 18, I'd already developed a theatregoing habit), but it did make a tremendous impression. If I'm calculating right, it was Friday 7 January 1983, and I'd managed to buy a ticket for a preview performance in the very back row, upstairs at the Liverpool Playhouse. It must have been the last seat in the house.

 

EdinburghFringefrontcover2

 

by Mark Fisher

Out now

Click here to order your copy

"Every single page of this book is enhanced by Mark Fisher’s lifelong enthusiasm for, and commitment to, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe – the greatest arts festival in the world."

Kath M Mainland

Chief executive, Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society

 

 

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