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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

Sweat shops: The Great Divide @Finborough

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  The Great Divide uses the worst industrial accident in history as the backdrop to explain the lives and times of some of the workers who lived and perished in the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire.  It is playing on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday at the  Finborough Theatre  until 20 September.  What is exciting about Alix Sobler's piece is how fragments of stories comes together to tell a much bigger one about immigration, dreams and unionisation against the backdrop of the deadliest workplace disaster in American history.    The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory was on the lower east side of Manhattan located on the top floors of an 11 storey building. Most of its workers were migrants working for low pay and long hours. The custom and practice in factories was to lock doors and limit exits to prevent theft. Smoking was banned but people did anyway.  So when fire broke out on 25 March 1911, the combination of flammable materials and no means of escape let to a fire of such intensity that