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Play recommendations?

fiesta1
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Play recommendations?#0
Posted: 4/9/06 at 4:51pm
I'm coming to London from 17 April - 2 May, and hope to catch many shows. I've got tickets for Billy, Royal Hunt of the Sun, and Hay Fever already; and am keeping a watchful eye on the half-price offerings.

Besides Virginia Woolf and Blackbird, any other recommendations for plays (not musicals, please). We are a male couple in our 40s, and not afraid of wit or intellect.

Should we try and catch Burn/Chatroom/Citizenship, Rachel Crrie, or Southwark Fair?
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creasemouse
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re: Play recommendations?#1
Posted: 4/9/06 at 7:23pm
The RSC's Crucible in the West End is truly stunning. Also Phaedra at the Donmar should be really good.

The Barbican have a Beckett season going on until early may...

Enjoy your trip?
Life is a big show tune
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Pinball Wizard
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re: Play recommendations?#2
Posted: 4/9/06 at 7:37pm
The National's Burn/Chatroom/Citizenship are probably the most exciting new productions in London at the moment - and certainly worth a look in if you can get the cheaper 10.00 seats at the front of the stalls (you can buy them in advance on the National's site - I sat there last week, and had no problems whatsoever!) These are certainly productions to see the future of stage talent with many fine young actors. However, they are teenage/youth based as they were drawn up under the annual Shell Connections programme - that said, no reason why adults don't enjoy them - when I was there there was a great mixture of people - adults, elderly people and young people - of which the idea is to attract them into more theatre.

The other reccomendations are the usual:

* Virginia Woolf - amazing
* Blackbird - v. powerful drama
* Hay Fever - Dame Judi's star turn!
* RSC's The Crucible - absolutely superb

Avoid Honour and Embers like the plague!!!!

The new production of Michael Frayn's Donkey's Years is also at the Comedy from end of April starring Samantha Bond (Moneypenny in James Bond), James Dreyfus and many more 'British' names! Looks interesting though!

Phaedra could be very good at the Donmar - though I'd wait for the press reviews to book.

My Name Is Rachel Corrie is worth seeing at the Playhouse if you can get tickets - there are cheap tickets currently available on the day or from lastminute.com!!!

Hope this helps!
Michie
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re: Play recommendations?#3
Posted: 4/12/06 at 12:50am
Do NOT miss RSC's The Crucible.
Rarely does this quality material, cast, director and staging come together at one time. WOW! When it's over you'll leave the theatre. But in the end this show will never leave you.

For fun and usually available at the Halfprice booth Leicester Square, Glorious. It's a hoot. But it will be closing soon. A true story about a NY socialite who made career out of not being able to sing but still sold out Carnegie Hall. I think she actually had a recording called, Murder of the High C's.

Of course RSC has started its year of producing all of Shakepeare's plays. Check what's playing as it changes frequently.

Have a great trip!!
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joshy
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joined:10/18/05
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re: Play recommendations?#4
Posted: 4/12/06 at 7:26am
Burn/Citizenship/Chatroom, DEFINITELY! I saw Citizenship/Chatroom, and they are worth seeing simply for the absolutely incredible performances of so many talented young actors. They're great fun as well!

The Crucible also shouldn't be missed.
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astonishing1985
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re: Play recommendations?#5
Posted: 4/12/06 at 8:37am
Mary Poppins
Guys and Dolls
Period of Adjustment
Sunday in the Park with George
Hartt School class of 2010 ;-)
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MercuryFur
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re: Play recommendations?#6
Posted: 4/15/06 at 8:54pm
Burn/Chatroom/Citizenship without a doubt, if you can only see 2 (not all 3 are on every day) then see Chatroom and Citizenship.

Southwark Fair is enjoyable, nothing too heavy, but not hilariously funny either. Great performances from the cast, though.

Festen is on in Richmond for a week (think it's beginning 23 April), that's fantastic with a great cast.
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StephanietheStar
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re: Play recommendations?#7
Posted: 4/17/06 at 6:35pm
in addition to what alot of people said:

One Flew Over a Cuckoos Nest


I was really impressed!

and don't go to Royal Hunt of the Sun....so bad...


and really, NO musicals?? there are so many!! :)

-Steph
and all that I could do because of you was talk of love...
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re: Play recommendations?#8
Posted: 5/4/06 at 11:53am
To help you find out more before buying your tickets, you can checkout www.UKTheatre.Net for reviews and opinions and then have a look at some previews on UKTheatreNetwork.com (click under LoveTheatre TV)

Have fun when you get here re: Play recommendations?
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fiesta1
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re: Play recommendations?#9
Posted: 5/5/06 at 2:49pm
Back now -- thanks for the advice from this site. We caught 8 shows during our trip.

The Crucible was one of the best evening of theatre I have ever experienced. You are so true about the magical synthesis of script, acting, direction, and production. A wowing production, and I am very pleased to have seen it. Very timely too.

Hay Fever was a delight. I generally view Coward as 'cotton candy' for the stage -- but this production was 1st class candy. And I had not had the honor of seeing Dame Judi live before.

We did catch Chatroom/Citizenship with the 10 pound day-of-performance tickets. Great performances from young actors ( I preferred Chatroom though, but Citizenship was also enjoyable).

Donkeys' Years was also an enjoyable night of theatre. We got good stalls seats from the booth in Leicester Square. I did not know any of the actors, but had many good laughs. Reminded me of the Saturday nights of British Comedies on the local PBS station.

Billy Elliott was excellent. I saw Liam, and he was well deserving of his Olivier. This was also the only musical we saw. Not that I don't like musicals, but we wanted to see mostly plays/comedeys this year. I've seen mostly musicals on prior trips.

I enjoyed the production of Royal Hunt. It is not Shaefer's best work, and I can see why it is rarely performed (30+ male and 2 female roles). Not the best show we saw last week, but I do not regret seeing it. I had house seats, so that may have also affected my perception.

Virginia Woolf was also a first-rate production with a great cast. Some other audience members did not understand it (perhaps Albee does not speak to the non-American experience as well -- the French woman next to me found it too talky and boring).

We also saw the ENT production of Hamlet. Ed Stoppard was very good in the title role, and the lighting was excellent. Maybe next year our trip will correspond to something being offered at the Globe.

Now I am saving $$$ for my next Broadway visits (July and December), and will be back in London next spring.
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joshy
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re: Play recommendations?#10
Posted: 5/5/06 at 7:42pm
Thanks for letting us know how your trip went! :) I'm glad you had a good time, and wow, you saw a lot of great stuff there.