Opening: Overcoat, Journey, RSC's Tamer & HorneDate: 19 January 2004
Amongst the major London openings taking place this week are:
OPENING TUESDAY, 20 January 2004, the drama schedule for BITE:04 (Barbican International Theatre Events) kicks off with The Overcoat, which continues at the Barbican Theatre ahead of a European tour. The award-winning physical theatre piece from the Canadian Stage Company is based on the short stories of Nikolai Gogal and set to the music of Shostakovich.
ALSO ON TUESDAY, Asian touring company Tamasha Theatre returns to west London’s Lyric Hammersmith, where it previously had award-winning success with Bollywood musical Fourteen Songs, Two Weddings and a Funeral. Their new piece, Strictly Dandia, exposes caste rivalries during the traditional Hindu mating season. It continues until 14 February 2004.
OPENING WEDNESDAY, 21 January 2004 (previews from 15 January), RC Sheriff's classic 1920s anti-war piece Journey's End is revived at the Comedy Theatre, 75 years (to the day) since its first West End season at the Savoy (See News, 12 Dec 2003). Based on the author's own experience in the trenches of the First World War, the play follows a group of officers, positioned behind British lines at St Quentin, France, and awaiting their fate. The anniversary production, directed by David Grindley, stars David Haig and Paul Bradley.
ALSO ON WEDNESDAY, the Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of John Fletcher's lesser-known sequel, The Tamer Tamed, joins Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew in repertory at the West End’s Queen’s Theatre for a limited season to 6 March 2004 (See News, 26 Nov 2003). In both, Jasper Britton and Alexandra Gilbreath play the alternately wooing, warring and wedding Petruchio and his successive wives, Kate and Maria. The productions, originally opened last spring in Stratford-upon-Avon, are directed by RSC associate director Gregory Doran.
This is believed to be the first major pairing of the two plays in some 370 years. They are also likely to be the last plays performed at the 980-seat Queen's for a very long while, as they’ll be followed by Cameron Mackintosh's production of Boublil and Schonberg's long-running blockbuster musical Les Miserables, which moves house in April after 18 years at the Palace Theatre down the road (See News, 21 Nov 2003).
DON'T MISS our Whatsonstage.com Outing to The Taming of the Shrew on 29 January! You’ll pay just £22.50 for top-price seats, post-show discussion & a 50% discount to return for The Tamer Tamed on your own - click here for info!
OPENING THURSDAY, 22 January 2004 (previews from 12 January), Round the Horne...Revisited, based on the 1960s radio comedy series, comes to Leicester Square's The Venue (See News, 9 Dec 2003). Brian Cooke, the last still living member of the original writing team, has written and adapted the new stage play based on two live radio episodes as well as previously unheard material. Kenneth Sebastian, Jonathan Rigby, Charles Armstrong and Kate Brown play the programme’s mad-cap bunch of comedians - Kenneth Williams, Kenneth Horne, Douglas Smith and Betty Marsden – who mercilessly send up the establishment.
- by Terri Paddock