Terri’s Blogs: Theatrical

My theatre blogs are usually in response to something in the news or to something I’ve seen or read. For my “Terri’s Top Picks” click on the Recommendations tag. Other regular tags that I use including Inspiring People and Inspiring Projects. For the very latest news, gossip and all-round theatre buzz, check out my Tweets page or follow me on Twitter @TerriPaddock.

Personal |  Theatrical

The House of the Spirits post-show video and photos: How does a country – and a family – recover from dictatorship?

Are you fans of Isabel Allende's The House of the Spirits? Allende's multi-award-winning debut novel, released in 1982, charts four generations of one family from the 1920s and the 1970s, and how tightly intertwined their personal fortunes are with political winds of change. Though the story is set in an unnamed Latin American country, it's strongly reminiscent of Allende's own homeland of Chile, where fascist dictator General Pinochet came to power in 1973 after a military coup. How much do you know about Pinochet's regime, during which thousands of citizens…
By Terri Paddock | 4 November 2019 | , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


The Good Scout post-show video and photos: How worried should we be about parallels between the 1930s and today?

While MPs were voting for an election that is likely to accelerate the UK's lurch to the right, I was back at Above The Stag Theatre last night talking about the increasingly worrying parallels - and historic dominoes - between the 1930s and today. Is it any wonder that The Good Scout left me in tears, even on second viewing? Have you heard about the cultural exchange between the British Boy Scouts and the Hitler Youth in the lead-up to the Second World War? Inspired by these incredible, little-known true events, writer/director Glenn Chandler…
By Terri Paddock | 30 October 2019 | , , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


David Walliams on getting the RSC’s ‘stamp of approval’ with The Boy in the Dress musical

After several years' development, the Royal Shakespeare Company's highly anticipated new musical - an adaptation of best-selling children's author David Walliams' 2008 debut novel The Boy in the Dress with a book by Mark Ravenhill and music and lyrics by chart-topping songwriters Robbie Williams and Guy Chambers - is gearing up for its world premiere. Ahead of an expected transfer, it has a limited run at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon from 8 November 2019 to 8 March 2020. During rehearsals, I spoke to David Walliams about his inspiration for the original story, his…
By Terri Paddock | 24 October 2019 | , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Sinatra: Raw post-show video and photos: What makes Frank Sinatra such an enduring icon?

Despite singing the songs of Sinatra since he was a teenager in Wolverhampton, Richard Shelton was turned down multiple times for a part in concert show The Rat Pack. So when he was invited to audition for the much darker play with music, Rat Pack Confidential, which ran at the West End's Whitehall Theatre (now Trafalgar Studios) in 2003, he went in angry and impatient... and finally got his man.  Shelton is now firmly established as one of world's foremost Frank Sinatra interpreters. Aged 50, Richard fulfilled a dream by moving…
By Terri Paddock | 23 October 2019 | , , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Ages of the Moon post-show video and photos: Remembering Pulitzer Prize winner Sam Shepard

I'm a huge fan of the late, Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright (and Oscar-nominated actor) Sam Shepard. How wonderful to be able to see and discuss one of his late plays, Ages of the Moon, which now receives its UK premiere two years after Shepard passed away (on 27 July 2017 at the age of 73). Shepard's many other plays include Fool for Love, A Lie of the Mind, The God of Hell, The Late Henry Moss and Buried Child (for which he received the Pulitzer Prize in 1979), all of which have…
By Terri Paddock | 20 October 2019 | , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Groan Ups post-show video and photos: With the original Mischief Theatre company and co-writers

As part of an ongoing series, I've chaired post-show talks with various Mischief Theatre casts this year, all of whom waxed lyrical about the brilliance of the company founders. Last night, I had a chance to pose questions to those original mischief-makers themselves. Co-writers Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer and Henry Shields and fellow founding members Nancy Zamit, Charlie Russell and Dave Hearn met at LAMDA drama school, where they founded Mischief in 2008. After years of presenting work at the Edinburgh Fringe, they had their breakthrough with multi-award-winning farce The…
By Terri Paddock | 18 October 2019 | , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


The Girl Who Fell post-show video and photos: How is social media affecting our mental health?

I feel like I've known writer Sarah Rutherford for years... that's one of the positives of social media. (We follow each other on Twitter.) The irony is it's her new play, The Girl Who Fell, about some of the negatives of social media that finally precipitated my meeting her in person. And what a great discussion we had last night at Trafalgar Studios after what was only the second-ever performance of this brand-new play, produced by Stage Traffic (a connection that Sarah Rutherford also has social media to thank for). "It’s meaningless. It’s…
By Terri Paddock | 17 October 2019 | , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


Post-show video and photos: Wrestling with absurdism, anthropomorphism & coercive control in Mites

A philosophising cat, a famished dog and a family of mites all make appearances - and strong impressions - in Mites, a new play by up-and-coming young British playwright James Mannion, written in the best traditions of the Theatre of the Absurd. Ruth, a lonely woman abandoned by her husband, lives in isolation with her beloved cat Bartholomew. When she's visited by a pest controller named Ken, who's come to rid her infestation of the titular creatures, she becomes convinced he's her unfaithful husband Kenneth returned. As she - and we - become…
By Terri Paddock | 16 October 2019 | , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


A Day in the Death of Joe Egg Q&A video and photos: What did the late Peter Nichols think of this historic West End casting?

I was back at Trafalgar Studios last night for this much-anticipated revival of Peter Nichols' 1967 masterpiece A Day in the Death of Joe Egg. And there was so much to discuss with this production, making history for a number of reasons. Along with Passion Play and Privates on Parade, A Day in the Death of Joe Egg remains one of Peter Nichols' best known and most frequently performed plays. The black comedy was inspired by Nichols' own experience of bringing up his disabled daughter, who died at the age of 11. In it,…
By Terri Paddock | 8 October 2019 | , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >


The Permanent Way Q&A video and photos: Why is a play about railway privatisation more relevant than ever?

I was lucky enough to see the original Out of Joint production of The Permanent Way at the National Theatre in 2003. I remember being horrified by David Hare's verbatim play about railway privatisation, based on first-hand accounts, including the people behind the body counts of the four major rail disasters between 1997 and 2002. With Alexander Lass' excellent revival at The Vaults, evocatively staged beneath Waterloo Station, the rumble of the trains creating the soundscape, Hare's play has not only lost none of its power - it's also become evident to…
By Terri Paddock | 25 September 2019 | , , , , , , , , | 0 comments | Read More >