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Theatre Reviews

‘Curtains’ review (UK tour)

★★★

Sunderland Empire, 21/01/2020

Just when you thought you’d heard it all, a murder mystery musical comedy starring Jason Manford in the lead role is touring the UK. Curtains, a musical from the creators of Cabaret and Chicago, tells the simple story of a murder mystery in a theatre where a company have just completed their opening night. Musical lover Lieutenant Frank Cioffi is called in to solve the crime and is tied up in the production as he works on the case. The show is embarking on it’s second leg of a UK tour with its first stop, Sunderland Empire. We were invited to the press night and after seeing glowing reviews from previous tour stops we expected great things.

Image credit: Richard Davenport/The Other Richard
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Theatre Reviews

5 Reasons To See ‘Amélie The Musical’

★★★★

The Other Palace, 04/01/2020

To round off a successful UK tour, Amélie The Musical is currently doing a 2 month run in The Other Palace, London. Unfortunately the tour didn’t reach Tyne and Wear so we booked our tickets for a day trip to see it in the capital and we were not disappointed! The show is based off the 2001 French speaking film of the same name; luckily the native language has been dropped for the musical and replaced with accents so it’s easier to understand. The story is of Amélie Poulain (Audrey Brisson), a shy Parisian waitress who takes great pleasure in anonymously improving stranger’s lives through small acts of kindness. This pass-time sees Amélie cross paths with one stranger who sparks more than happiness inside the heart of our introvert protagonist.

Image credit: Pamela Raith Photography

Filled with delightful charm and a wonderful soundtrack, we thoroughly enjoyed the performance. Check out our five reasons to see Amélie The Musical below!

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Theatre Spotlight

Our Pre-Wedding Theatre Photoshoot

We realised we haven’t posted anything personal on here for quite some time so thought we would share a bit about the photos we got for our pre-wedding shoot at Sunderland Empire, one of our favourite theatres. We absolutely adore these photos by From The Smiths Photography and hope you like them too!

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Theatre Reviews

5 Reasons To See ‘Blood Brothers’

★★★★

Sunderland Empire, 04/12/2019

“So, did you hear the story of the Johnstone twins?” That’s right, Willy Russell’s Blood Brothers is back out on another UK tour. Studied by thousands of drama students each year and adored by audiences across the world, this classic musical is showing no signs of stopping. The story tells the lives of two twins, Mickey (Alexander Patmore) and Eddie (Joel Benedict) separated at birth after their mother (Lyn Paul) was coerced into giving away one of her newborns to her employer Mrs Lyons (Chloe Taylor). Convinced by superstitious tales that the twins should never meet again in the interest of their safety, Mrs Johnstone is left with no choice. Alas, living only a stones throw from one another, this inevitable meeting of the unassuming boys was always bound to happen…

Image credit: Robert Day (image shows previous cast)

As one of the first musicals John ever saw which began his love for theatre, this one holds a special place in his heart. We consider this show to be one that would be great to take someone to see who isn’t that into musicals as it’s not too heavy on the “bursting into song” that can put some none-musical-lovers off. Here are our five reasons to see Blood Brothers:

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Theatre Reviews

5 Reasons To See ‘& Juliet’

★★★★★

London has once again been graced with another new musical! & Juliet, written by David West Read (Schitt’s Creek), directed by Luke Sheppard (In The Heights, The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾ -The Musical) and featuring music from Max Martin’s extensive catalogue (Backstreet Boys, P!nk, Bon Jovi, Celine Dion, Britney Spears, Ariana Grande etc. etc. etc.) has found its home at the Shaftesbury Theatre. The comedy musical follows Shakespeare (and his wife Anne)’s rewriting of his classic tale beginning with Juliet not killing her self upon finding Romeo’s body. From here, she decides to go to Paris with her best friends to find love once again.

Cassidy Janson (Anne), Miriam Teak-Lee (Juliet) and Melanie La Barrie (Nurse). Image credit: Johan Persson

We managed to see a preview of the show in Manchester this October and really enjoyed the performance but seeing it in the West End has completely blown us away. The production has become everything previews are intended for, it’s one of a kind and has to be seen to be believed! Here are our five reasons to see & Juliet:

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Theatre Reviews

5 Reasons To See ‘Dear Evan Hansen’

★★★★

The smash hit musical has officially opened in London! Written by Steven Levenson (who has won a Tony Award for this show) with a soundtrack by the legendary Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (The Greatest Showman, La La Land), this London production was set to be a resounding success after it’s accomplishments on Broadway winning six Tony Awards. The show follows Evan Hansen (Sam Tutty), whose well intended lie of telling a grieving family that he was best friends with their son spirals out of control. Filled with some fantastic songs and such raw emotion, this show is one not to miss. We loved the show and thought it was so sad! The only part we felt didn’t really land that well with a British audience was “To Break In A Glove”, perhaps with the baseball glove father/son sentiment being something almost exclusively American, but hey, it’s an American show! Regardless, we highly recommend this show. Here are our five reasons to see Dear Evan Hansen in London!

Photo credit: Matthew Murphy
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Theatre Spotlight

‘& Juliet’ backstage event 31/10/2019

Where do we even start with this day? It was the BEST! After receiving an invite to the Shaftesbury Theatre for this event, we hastily negotiated the day off work, organised train tickets and even bagged ourselves a couple of seats at the 6pm show of Six!

The event was organised by Theatre Craft (more about them at the end) and London Theatre. The plan was to have a backstage tour at the Shaftesbury, a Q&A with the director and writer, and then watch some of the tech rehearsal. All this was 2 days before & Juliet opened at the theatre too. Super exciting!

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Theatre Reviews

‘& Juliet’ review

★★★★

Opera House, Manchester 12/10/2019

Image credit: Johan Persson

Max Martin’s name may not be familiar to many, but the songs he has written, co-written and produced over his career definitely are. With classics like “…Baby One More Time” (Britney Spears), “Since U Been Gone” (Kelly Clarkson) and “Can’t Feel My Face” (The Weeknd) in his writing credits, it’s no wonder he is the third most successful songwriter with 22 number one singles in the US charts (ahead of him are Paul McCartney (32) and John Lennon (26)).

Martin’s hits have now been put to a new musical, & Juliet, written by playwright David West Read. The story follows an alternative path of Juliet (Miriam-Teak Lee) had she not committed suicide at the end of Shakespeare’s tragedy.

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Theatre Reviews

5 Reasons To See ‘Pride and Prejudice* (*sort of)’

★★★★

Entering the auditorium for an adaptation of Pride and Prejudice doesn’t always begin with seeing a disco ball hanging above the set. Jane Austen’s classic tale of true love has had quite the re-vamp, so grab your portable karaoke machine, this one might be a little different to the novel you remember. Our five reasons to see Pride and Prejudice* ( *sort of) while it’s tour stops in Birmingham, Edinburgh, Leeds, Oxford and Southampton are as follows:

Image credit: Mihaela Bodlovic
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Theatre Reviews

‘Six’ review

Arts Theatre, London 28/09/2019

★★★★★

Image credit: sixthemusical.com

Make some room on that “hottest ticket” top-spot Hamilton, there’s a new show in town. Officially re-opening it’s open-ended residence at the Arts Theatre in January 2019 (currently extended until July 2020), Six is no stranger to heightened fandom. Sold out performances, masses of fan art and queues to meet the cast after each performance gives an indication to the level of success with it’s audiences.