Terri’s Blogs: Personal

Occasionally, I have thoughts that have either have nothing to do with theatre – astonishing – or that cross other private boundaries. You can find these ramblings here.

Personal |  Theatrical

Inspired by David Baddiel: My top ten most highly trolled tweets

As a Twitter geek, one of the things I enjoyed most about David Baddiel's latest one-man show My Family: Not the Sitcom, which is now enjoying its second West End run at the Playhouse Theatre after premiering last year at the Menier Chocolate Factory, is how he so successfully employs social media in his storytelling. As Baddiel makes clear himself, My Family is not about social media. (It's about, as the title indicates, his family and more specifically his late mother's openly conducted, extra-marital affair and his still-living father's slide…
By Terri Paddock | 23 April 2017 | , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Bra-waving, toe-tapping and female solidarity: The Girls and Stepping Out

If you're seeking life affirmation, celebrations of female solidarity (of a quintessentially British variety) and general uplift, my two current West End recommendations that tick all three boxes are The Girls, Tim Firth and Gary Barlow's new musical adaptation of the story of the Calendar Girls from Yorkshire, and Maria Friedman's revival of Richard Harris' 1984 comedy Stepping Out, which revolves around a weekly tap dance class help in a north London church hall. On the evening I attended The Girls, I was in a particularly low place, not helped by…
By Terri Paddock | 2 April 2017 | , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Q&A photos and podcast: A return to Brechtian politics via The Caucasian Chalk Circle

What would Bertolt Brecht have made of Donald Trump? Brecht's "epic theatre" was sparked by the rise of Nazism in 1930s Germany. Many pundits have likened the political period we've now entered - with Trump in the Oval Office, Brexit under way and hard-right populism on the rise across Europe - with that dark decade of the twentieth century. Are modern theatremakers up to the Brechtian challenge? And can theatre actually make a difference in the face of such upheaval? After an acclaimed season at Brockley Jack last January, Lazarus…
By Terri Paddock | 31 March 2017 | , , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Limehouse asks both ‘what if?’ and ‘why not now?’ Urgent questions

Steve Waters’ Limehouse is as much a rallying call as a play: a rallying call for those of us left politically homeless by Jeremy Corbyn’s failed Labour Party. It takes its name from the east London district where the “Gang of Four” – then-Labour politicians Roy Jenkins, Shirley Williams, Bill Rodgers and David Owen (played respectively by Roger Allam, Debra Gillett, Paul Chahidi and Tom Goodman-Hill) - met in 1981 (at Owen’s home) and announced to the press that they were breaking away from Michael Foot’s left-lurching Labour to form the…
By Terri Paddock | 19 March 2017 | , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


The ‘will of the people’? London has no place in My Country

I’ve never voted Conserative. Indeed, the morning after the 2015 General Election, I was so horrified that, after five years of austerity, the Tories had not only got back in but had done so with a majority, that I immediately joined the Labour Party and vowed to get the Tories out at the next election. As then Prime Minister, David Cameron was clearly no friend of mine. Then the EU Referendum happened. I won’t quote recent history back to you chapter and verse or pretend that Cameron, leading the Remain side…
By Terri Paddock | 12 March 2017 | , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Where were you on 9/11? How about 7/7? BU21 brought it all back

What were you doing on 9/11? And, if you were in London, on 7/7? I thought about this recently when watching Stuart Slade’s excellent new play BU21, which this weekend completes its West End run at Trafalgar Studios 2 after last year’s premiere at Theatre503. The play centres on a group of Londoners who were survivors (or possibly not in one case) of a contemporary terrorist attack in which a plane bound for Heathrow is shot down. One of the play’s characters explains why he wasn’t immediately affected at the…
By Terri Paddock | 18 February 2017 | , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Tanya Moodie on Trump: ‘We need to keep marching together, every day’

This week the president of the United States Donald Trump said (or rather tweeted) that those who participated in protests against his administration fell into one of three categories: “professional anarchists, thugs or paid protestors”. His White House Secretary Sean Spicer reiterated the last in a television interview, insisting that protestors are definitely paid, that protest has indeed become a "profession" (to which, I asked whether I should send him an invoice as I hadn’t yet received any money in my account). Rather than pick apart these two latest, egregious lies (so…
By Terri Paddock | 7 February 2017 | , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Behind-the-scenes: My Critics’ Circle Awards experience and Glenda Jackson crush

A year ago when blogging about the annual Critics’ Circle Theatre Awards, my headline was “Critics’ Circle Award winners: Are they the only ones that make sense anymore?” I didn’t know then that Critics’ Circle Drama Section Chair Mark Shenton would go on to ask me to produce these awards, nor that, in a moment of madness – having vowed to myself and others so many times since leaving WhatsOnStage three years ago, never to organise another awards event – I would actually agree to do so. It’s an irony,…
By Terri Paddock | 5 February 2017 | , , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Top Trumps podcast: What can we do next as progressives?

The best antidote to hopelessness has got to be action. That's what I have kept reminding myself over the past few months, and what I recited almost mantra-like on Friday afternoon as I watched Donald J Trump be sworn in as the 45th US president and then deliver a dystopian, divisive inaugural speech that painted the rest of the world as enemies of the States. After this speech, I thought, at least we can finally put to rest the notion, fervently held by many commentators, that we should all wait and see, that Trump…
By Terri Paddock | 22 January 2017 | , , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


6 Quotes: What can Buried Child tell us about Trump’s America?

What does Sam Shepard’s 1978 play Buried Child have to tell us about America after the presidential election of Donald Trump? The West End transfer of the New Group’s production, first seen in New York this past February, was announced in September, when the likelihood of a Trump presidency was still being dismissed by most pundits. But even then the release noted the connection between the then of the play and the now of modern America: “Set in rural America as it was reeling from a recession, the downturn of…
By Terri Paddock | 5 December 2016 | , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >