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Bit parts: Garry Starr Performs Everything @swkplay

Garry Starr Performs Everything is a bare-bones (and bare buttocks) tribute to the theatre. Theatre may be in trouble, and audiences are down, but Garry Starr aims to save the theatre and bring back to the masses every style of theatre possible. As long as each style involves wearing a transparent white leotard or a skimpy thong. And tassels. It's part comedy, part physical comedy and part perv at Gary's physical prowess. The sentiment "if you've got it, flaunt it" applies here. So here we are with a show that has been around for some years and is having its first proper London run at the Southwark Playhouse (Borough) through Christmas. The premise is that Garry Starr (played by Damien Warren-Smith) has left the Royal Shakespeare Company over artistic differences. He is now on a mission to save the theatre from misrepresentation and worthy interpretations by doing things such as a two-minute Hamlet, recreating scenes from a Pinter play using unsuspecting audience

Theatre: Cat On A Hot Tin Roof

This week I finally caught up with Cat On A Hot Tin Roof that has been playing for a while. Directed by Debbie Allen, the all-black cast in Tenessee William's play about Brick, a man who is sexually ambivalent about his wife Maggie, while visiting his family estate in Mississippi. Given that Brick is played by Adrian Lester and the show opens with him taking a shower you could appreciate why she is a little frustrated by this scenario. The audience the night I saw it became a little frisky after this opening scene as well...

It's not my favourite Tenessee William's play and there is way too much exposition and labouring on about Maggie being like a cat... On a tin roof... That was hot... It was hard to buy Lester as an alcoholic either mourning over the loss of his dead friend or on the down-low. More convincing was that he was pissed off rather than pissed with his moody looks and occasional throwing of his crutch...

Still it was an entertaining production, particularly with the sharp second act where Brick and Big Daddy (James Earl Jones) trade barbs and confront the truth. In the end though, particularly with an overlong third act it was hard to work out what the central message is. Maybe it is large tracts of land can conceal anything... It runs until April...

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