• I chaired a post-show Q&A with Stand & Be Counted Theatre at their performance of Where We Began at HighTide Festival in Walthamstow on 23 Sep 2018. © Peter Jones
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    Where We Began Q&A video and photos: Should where we’re born define where we end up?

Where We Began Q&A video and photos: Should where we’re born define where we end up?

Should country of birth define your identity or determine where you end up? 
Set in the near-future, Stand and Be Counted Theatre’s highly political new play Where We Began imagines a world where a new universal law mandates that everyone must return to where they were born and stay there. Borders are built everywhere and strictly enforced: […]

  • The Rise & Fall of Little Voice post-show Q&A at the Barn Theatre. © Peter Jones
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    Q&A video and photos: Little Voice makes a big impact at the Barn

Q&A video and photos: Little Voice makes a big impact at the Barn

Are women punished in drama for liking sex and drink? What has modern classic The Rise and Fall of Little Voice got in common with Greek drama? What’s the secret to vocal impressions?

I was delighted to return to Cirencester this weekend to chair my third consecutive post-show discussion at the pioneering Barn Theatre. For this […]

  • Artistic director Iwan Lewis and Cotswold councillor Joe Harris at the One Minute debate. © Peter Jones
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    One Minute Q&A video and photos: Who’s offended by bad language onstage and why?

One Minute Q&A video and photos: Who’s offended by bad language onstage and why?

When I first saw the Barn Theatre revival of Simon Stephens’ 2003 play One Minute, the things that struck me most were, in no particular order: the ground-breaking video projection design (by PJ McEvoy, film sequences by Ben Collins), the delicate performances of the five-strong cast, the seamless-but-sinister weaving of social media into a […]

  • Ewan McGregor & Jonny Lee Miller in the 1996 film of Trainspotting
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    How did Irvine Welsh’s Trainspotting become a cultural phenomenon? I’m finally ready to immerse myself

How did Irvine Welsh’s Trainspotting become a cultural phenomenon? I’m finally ready to immerse myself

I’ve always been squeamish about needles. And I’m not much better with graphic drug-taking by any other method either. I first saw Harry Gibson’s stage adaptation of Irvine Welsh’s Trainspotting in the 1990s when I was a recently-arrived-from-America twenty-something in London. My memory of the experience involves nausea and confusion (I wasn’t able to understand much of what the […]

  • The full military monty:  The entire Soldier On company took part in the post-show Q&A at the Playground Theatre. © Peter Jones
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    Q&A photos and podcast: How has theatre helped Soldier On‘s veterans recover?

Q&A photos and podcast: How has theatre helped Soldier On‘s veterans recover?

I’m pretty certain that my event last night at SOLDIER ON was my largest-ever panel for a post-show Q&A: in total, there were 19 of us, including me. Thank goodness the Playground Theatre had plenty of chairs and just enough room to arrange them in arc across the stage (I chose to stand and rove!).

Such enthusiasm for the piece […]

  • London's many festivals this August
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    Is London the real festival city in August? InMotion & other capital offerings

Is London the real festival city in August? InMotion & other capital offerings

I’m in the slightly odd position this month of working on an Edinburgh show while not being in Edinburgh at all. (Mind you, I have seen the show, in China in May, so can knowledgeably recommend it – so, if you’re in Edinburgh, by all means, do! It’s China Goes Pop!, a great East […]

  • Clockwise from top: Around the World in 80 Days, Flood and The Wasp.
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    My plays diary: Sari, Around the World in 80 Days, The Wasp, Flood

My plays diary: Sari, Around the World in 80 Days, The Wasp, Flood

My plays diary this week isn’t terribly varied. I’m spending most nights at the Tristan Bates Theatre, all in aid of one production: Preethi Nair’s Sari: The Whole Five Yards. That said, I’ll be lucky if I say the play once – demand for tickets is so high that I can’t get in any night […]

  • Jeffrey Holland with Corinna Marlowe in Waiting for God. © Geraint Lewis
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    My Waiting for God interview series: Leading man Jeffrey Holland

My Waiting for God interview series: Leading man Jeffrey Holland

I was recently hired by the producer of Waiting for God to interview the show’s stars and writer as it embarks on a major UK tour. Here’s the first in a three-part series. Waiting for God continues touring until 8 July 2017. Visit the show website for full dates and tickets.

Jeffrey Holland stars in the new stage […]

  • Nichola McAuliffe in Waiting for God. © Geraint Lewis
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    My Waiting for God interview series: Leading lady Nichola McAuliffe

My Waiting for God interview series: Leading lady Nichola McAuliffe

I was recently hired by the producer of Waiting for God to interview the show’s stars and writer as it embarks on a major UK tour. Here’s the first in a three-part series. Waiting for God continues touring until 8 July 2017. Visit the show website for full dates and tickets.

Nichola McAuliffe stars in the new stage […]

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    My Waiting for God interview series: Writer and creator Michael Aitkens

My Waiting for God interview series: Writer and creator Michael Aitkens

I was recently hired by the producer of Waiting for God to interview the show’s stars and writer as it embarks on a major UK tour. Here’s the first in a three-part series. Waiting for God continues touring until 8 July 2017. Visit the show website for full dates and tickets.

Michael Aitkens conceived and created the […]

  • Clockwise from top: Guards at the Taj, Sea Fret, Junkyard and Waiting for God.
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    My theatre diary: Guards at the Taj, Junkyard, Waiting for God and Sea Fret

My theatre diary: Guards at the Taj, Junkyard, Waiting for God and Sea Fret

Here’s a round-up of productions I’ve seen it recent weeks which I haven’t already covered in Press Passes (do please dance your way as soon as you can into seeing both An American in Paris and 42nd Street in the West End) or other blogs. What do all four of these have in common? […]

  • Critics' Theatre 2016 highlights included: Harry Potter, Groundhog Day, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Yerma, King Lear, the all-female Shakespeare Trilogy and Iphigenia in Splott.
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    The list of lists: Was there a consensus on the best of #theatre2016?

The list of lists: Was there a consensus on the best of #theatre2016?

Last week I was more on schedule with rounding up lists of critics’ tips for the best theatre coming up this year. But in truth, as I’ve been organising the Critics’ Circle Theatre Awards ceremony on 31 January, as well as working with My Theatre Mates’ to announce the Also Recognised shortlists soon after that, […]

  • The Boys in the Band cast members Greg Lockett, John Hopkins, Ben Mansfield & Mark Gatiss reacting to another gem from playwright Mart Crowley
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    Photos and podcast: Mart Crowley and The Boys in the Band cast on making history

Photos and podcast: Mart Crowley and The Boys in the Band cast on making history

UPDATED: The Boys in the Band transfers to the West End’s Vaudeville Theatre for a strictly limited season from 7 to 18 February 2017. Buy tickets here.

Mart Crowley’s seminal play, The Boys in the Band, premiered in New York in 1968, just 14 months before the Stonewall riots that ignited the gay rights movement. […]

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    Photos and podcast: Climbing metaphorical mountains with Pilgrims playwright Elinor Cook

Photos and podcast: Climbing metaphorical mountains with Pilgrims playwright Elinor Cook

Critic Matt Trueman described Elinor Cook’s Pilgrims, about a pair of young mountain climbers, as the “peak of playwriting”. I got to talk mountain climbing, metaphors and much more with this whipsmart George Devine Award-winning playwright at last night’s Q&A after the performance of Pilgrims at London’s Yard Theatre.

For the Q&A, we were also joined by […]

  • HighTide 2016: Face to Face with Alexi Kaye Campbell, Elizabeth McGovern & Ben Miles, chaired by Terri Paddock. © Peter Jones
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    #HighTide2016 photos and podcast: Alexi Kaye Campbell, Elizabeth McGovern and Ben Miles

#HighTide2016 photos and podcast: Alexi Kaye Campbell, Elizabeth McGovern and Ben Miles

I made my HighTide Festival debut this weekend and what a privilege. Over the course of the weekend at this ten-day annual event, held in the beautiful Suffolk coast town of Aldeburgh and now marking its tenth anniversary, I had the privilege of chairing three hour-long “Face to Face” talks with world-class artists.

In this […]

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    Manchester’s Menier is born: Look inside the new Hope Mill Theatre

Manchester’s Menier is born: Look inside the new Hope Mill Theatre

I’ve long been a fan of Katy Lipson at Aria Entertainment and have followed her fast-growing career with great interest. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to physically follow her to Manchester, where she’s recently branched out into venue programming and management with the team behind the city’s newest fringe venue, the Hope Mill Theatre. […]

  • Florian Zeller family plays: Kenneth Cranham in The Father, Gina McKee in The Mother
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    A Florian Zeller hat trick: The Father, The Mother and The Truth

A Florian Zeller hat trick: The Father, The Mother and The Truth

Is Florian Zeller the new Yasmina Reza?

Certainly, he’s the most successful French playwright to hit English shores since Reza, whose 1990s hits – Life x 3, The Unexpected Man and, of course, the long-running (eight years in the West End), starry cast-rotating Art – were followed more recently by 2006’s God of Carnage in […]

My theatre diary: Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Rabbit Hole, Pink Mist, One of Those

Here are a few more plays that I’ve seen recently and can happily recommend. As usual, I’ve listed them in closing order – and two of them finish their London runs this weekend, so sorry for the short notice.

If you follow me on Twitter (@TerriPaddock) – please do! – you’ll be able to see […]

Press pass: Everything you need to know about Guys & Dolls

The 2016 West End season got off to a rollicking start this week with Wednesday’s opening of Guys and Dolls, the latest Chichester Festival transfer to the Savoy Theatre, which follows fast on the heels of the last CFT transfer of another Broadway musical revival, Gypsy. It was a surprisingly star-studded, red carpet affair for […]

  • Niamh Cusack, Tom Hughes and Anthony Head in Ticking at Trafalgar Studios 2. © Bronwen Sharp
    Permalink Niamh Cusack, Tom Hughes and Anthony Head in Ticking at Trafalgar Studios 2. © Bronwen SharpGallery

    My theatre diary: ‘New’ plays The First Man, Ticking, Teddy Ferrara, Eventide

My theatre diary: ‘New’ plays The First Man, Ticking, Teddy Ferrara, Eventide

The new play’s the thing, even when it’s very old…. Here are four I’ve seen over the past few weeks, three of which I haven’t managed to squeeze yet into separate blogs due to lack of enough hours in the days, but that I’d nevertheless recommend. As usual, I’ve listed productions in closing date order.

The exception on […]

Why are strong women – and witches – so scary?

Tonight should have been the night that Rebecca Lenkiewicz’s new Out of Joint play Jane Wenham: The Witch of Walkern, inspired by the last woman in England to be charged with witchcraft in the 18th century, visited the Ipswich High School for Girls as part of its rural touring in East Anglia and Essex.

Unfortunately, […]

  • Barney Norris in rehearsals for Eventide
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    INTERVIEW (pt2): Barney Norris on Peter Gill, Van Gogh writing and theatres as ’empathy engines’

INTERVIEW (pt2): Barney Norris on Peter Gill, Van Gogh writing and theatres as ’empathy engines’

Playwright Barney Norris has followed his award-winning debut Visitors with Eventide, which is now running at London’s Arcola Theatre before touring until 15 November 2015, care of Up in Arms, the theatre company he co-founded with director Alice Hamilton.

I’m a huge fan of Barney, both as a great writer and a great thinker. In this second […]

  • Barney Norris with Eventide cast member Ellie Piercy in rehearsals
    Permalink Barney Norris with Eventide cast member Ellie Piercy in rehearsalsGallery

    INTERVIEW (pt1): Eventide‘s Barney Norris on monoculture, Thomas Hardy and Salisbury dreams

INTERVIEW (pt1): Eventide‘s Barney Norris on monoculture, Thomas Hardy and Salisbury dreams

I’ve been looking forward to Barney Norris’ new play ever since I caught his acclaimed four-hander Visitors at the Bush Theatre last year. The play, which centred on an elderly couple dealing with the devastating consequences of dementia, affected me deeply. Partly, that was because of my own family’s experience with my father’s recent post-operative delirium, but […]