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Death becomes her: A Brief List Of Everyone Who Died @finborough

For a natural process, death is not a topic that comes up naturally for people. We ask how people are doing but expect the response to be “I’m great”, not “I’m not dead yet”. And so for the main character in A Brief List of Everyone Who Died, Graciela has a death issue. Starting with when she was five and found out only after the matter that her parents had her beloved dog euthanised. So Graciela decides that nobody she loves will die from then on. And so this piece becomes a fruitless attempt at how she spends her life trying to avoid death while it is all around her. It’s currently having its world premiere  at the Finborough Theatre . As the play title suggests, it is a brief list of life moments where death and life intervene for the main character, from the passing of relatives, cancer, suicides, accidents and the loss of parents. Playwright Jacob Marx Rice plots the critical moments of the lives of these characters through their passing or the passing of those around them. Howeve

The best of all possible worlds: Candide in Concert with @LMTOrch @CadoganHall

It is possible to see the best of all possible worlds after experiencing the passion and sublime music making from London Musical Theatre Orchestra's concert version of Candide.

Playing for one night only at Cadogan Hall, you left the theatre sharing the joy and passion the musicians felt for Bernstein's work.

Based on a story by Voltaire, it's about a young man determined to cling to optimism despite the frequent tragedies he encounters. Along the way he's expelled from home, dragged into the Bulgarian army, brought before the Spanish Inquisition... But the plot is not so important...

As a concert version, Bernstein's operetta lets you overlook the sillier parts of the story and focus on the music and performances.

In the title role, Rob Houchen defines the optimism of the character with an a delicate tenor voice.

Anna O'Byrne as Cunegonde was a delight to watch. Particularly as she made singing high e-flats look  easy in the showstopping number "Glitter and Be Gay".

James Dreyfus held the proceedings together as the narrator and comic relief.

The orchestra is the first in London dedicated to Musical Theatre. Founded in 2015 by Music Director Freddie Tapner it was intended to give London musicians experience in playing big orchestral musical theatre scores.  Bernstein would have approved for sure.

Earlier in the year they performed Honeymoon In Vegas with Jason Robert Brown conducting which was also sensational.

During the interval, two strangers asked me "Is this just for one night?" Alas it was. But it's exciting to see something extraordinary even if it is for one night.

They'll be back at Hackney Empire on September 23 for a concert version of Jerry Herman's Mack and Mabel. In December they'll be in the West End for A Christmas Carol. Sign up on their website for updates.


Photos by Nick Rutter

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