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Eternal guilt: Dorian The Musical @SWKplay

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Dorian is a new musical that updates Oscar Wilde’s gothic novel from the uptight Victorian era to an undetermined period of gender fluidity and glam rock. On paper, musicalising the Picture of Dorian Gray to a period of glam rock, social media, and cheap shoes seems like a good idea. After all, Oscar Wilde’s gothic story is very adaptable. It has been the source of countless adaptations for the stage, television or movies. I was half expecting a trashy Dorian, similar to the early 1980s telemovie that shifted Dorian’s gender to a woman. This version falls into a so bad it’s good category with Anthony Perkins in a lead role, who as he ages under makeup starts to look like Andy Warhol.  And while it’s great to see a new show, a strong cast can’t compensate for such an earnest production with underpowered songs. There’s no sense of fun, and some curious staging and costume choices  -mismatched dresses, crocodile boots and furry suits - serve as a distraction. It’s currently playing at th

Meanwhile somewhere in rural England: Weald @Finborough

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Weald, the new play by Daniel Foxsmith  currently playing at the Finborough Theatre , is a funny and   intriguing piece about rural life in England and the bond between men. The premise is that Jim arrives home after six years away in need of work at a livery yard. It is only temporary as he needs the work. Sam, the older man and father figure to him, reluctantly agrees. As they get back to work, it is as if they were picking up where they left off. But in the years since Jim left, both have changed. The harsh economic realities for both of them mean that things are going to be as they were before.