News: Papatango announce winning monologues for Isolated But Open – Voices From Across The Shutdown

Papatango Theatre Company has announced the ten winning monologues from their Isolated But Open – Voices From Across The Shutdown initiative. Filmed performances of the monologues are available now for free on Papatango’s website (, alongside the publication of each monologue as a free online PDF by Nick Hern Books.

The winning monologues were chosen from 2,063 submissions.

They are: Continue reading “News: Papatango announce winning monologues for Isolated But Open – Voices From Across The Shutdown”

Round-up of news and treats and other interesting things

In Bechdel Testing LifeBechdel Theatre presents four short plays by Isley Lynn, Rabiah Hussain, Guleraana Mir, and Lizzie Milton. Each play is inspired by a real-life conversation between women.
The Experiment:
Inspired by the famous Bechdel Test, which asks: “Are there two female characters? Do they talk to each other? About something other than a man?”, women were asked to record their own conversations with each other – to pass the Bechdel Test in real life.
Their recordings were then given to a team of fantastic female playwrights.
The Result:
Four new plays exploring the relationships that make up our daily lives but are less often represented in fiction.
Bechdel Testing Life is a celebration of the complex, intimate, hilarious, and genius conversations that take place when women get together. It plays at the Bunker Theatre on 22nd and 23rd July.

Continue reading “Round-up of news and treats and other interesting things”

Review: Strife, Minerva

“There is only one way of treating men, with the iron hand … yield one demand and they will take six”

The list of the NT2000 top 100 plays is an interesting one, full of the sort of plays I wouldn’t ever have chosen to see and so using it as a guide to stretching my theatrical viewing has been illustrative. Which is a roundabout way of saying the latest play I wouldn’t necessarily have chosen for myself that I went to see was John Galsworthy’s 1909 Strife at the Minerva in Chichester, incidentally marking Bertie Carvel’s directorial debut.

Set around an industrial dispute at a Welsh tinplate works where a strike has been running for six months, Strife examines the stresses this places on all concerned. The workers, who don’t have the support of their union; the board, who have travelled from London to thrash out a compromise; and the firebrand leaders of each faction who might not be so different as all that, each equally stubborn in refusing to budge from their position. Continue reading “Review: Strife, Minerva”

Review: The Man, Finborough

“I can’t do anything now…without Mum going ‘ooh you and your London ways’”

Isn’t it great when sometimes you have your low expectations just thoroughly confounded. Having booked my ticket to see The Man at the Finborough Theatre for this particular date to ensure I could see the reading of Mike Bartlett’s new play Bull later on the same evening, I was quite disappointed when the cast was announced, the lead role being shared by four actors including Samuel Barnett but on my night, we were being landed with the playwright James Graham instead. So off I trotted to Earls Court fully prepared with grumpy indignation, but I am pleased to say that I think we just might have witnessed something very special indeed.

As you enter the small auditorium, you are handed a receipt and told to keep hold of it as it will form part of the story. The set is simply dressed with piles of receipts, magazines, an iPod and speakers as the focus is on the receipts we have in our hand. Ben arrives on the pretext of trying and failing to complete his tax self-assessment form and begins to go through the pieces of paper one by one, taking them from us and deciding whether they are claimable expenses or not, telling the stories that lie behind them whilst doing so. It means that each night, the whole story will be told in a different way in a different order, providing a “uniquely interactive experience” which for once is exactly what it says. Continue reading “Review: The Man, Finborough”