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Showing posts with the label Tristan Bates Theatre

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Kafka-ish: Kafka @Finborough

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In offering proof that Kafka is everything to everyone - writer-performer Jack Klaff plays various roles, including the man himself in what is a part tour, part immersion and part legend of Franz Kafka. He is a writer who achieved fame after his life was cut short due to succumbing to tuberculosis at the age of forty. He is probably better known for his reputation and the Kafkaesque style attributed to his writing than his life. But after this piece, you’re left curious to learn more about the man and his works. And that has to be the best theatrical tribute you could give a writer, even for a writer who stipulated that his works be destroyed upon his death. It’s currently playing at the Finborough Theatre . Franz Kafka was born in Prague in 1883. In 1901, he was admitted to a university and began studying law. While studying, he met Max Brod, who would become his best friend and eventual literary executor. Brod would posthumously publish many of his works and writings. Kafka’s life co

Signs of life online and in concert...

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While theatre is slowly showing signs of reopening in the coming month I’ve seen my first show indoors. In Italy. A concert. No temperature checks just leave your name and wear a mask throughout the concert. And sit relatively apart from strangers within a small church where the concert was taking place. It was great to see something. Anything. After so many months.  The transmission rates are lower in Italy, and they do appear to be taking Covid19 a lot more seriously than in the UK. Leaving your name and phone number is a requirement. Posters are everywhere reminding people to wash their hands and keep a distance. Indoor spaces are well ventilated. Everyone wears a mask without making a fuss. Hopefully following these simple rules without over-complicating things will allow venues to open up where possible.  Until then, The Public Campaign for the Arts has launched a new online platform, creating an unprecedented support link between UK citizens and their cultural organisations. The

Brief transactions: The Cloakroom Attendant @Tristanbates

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The Cloakroom Attendant is a mediation on the ordinary among the extraordinary. It concludes this evening at the Tristan Bates Theatre . Set deep below a prestigious gallery of national importance. In the basement lies the cloakroom. It’s a place where dreams, fashion and items larger than a small bag need to be left. It’s a ritual and an obligation before viewing the masterpieces high above.  And of course being a job in London it’s a role that’s filled by a young European national, Dimitra Barla. Over qualified and over from Greece. Fluent in four languages.  She watches the people and their belongings while contemplating her own life and choices. This solo show brings to life Barla’s experiences working as a cloakroom attendant. She provides a museum-like categorisation and classification of visitors. And along the way she also imagines and reimagines her own life and the artefacts around her.  Alternatively funny and mysterious, objects and artefacts intertwine with her own dreams.

Chats and swipes: Love Me Now @TristanBates

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Casual encounters are in the spotlight in Love Me Now. It’s a new play by Michelle Barnette playing at Tristan Bates Theatre . Not so much about love gone wrong but about the young and the loveless. There are no names in this piece as three characters move in and out of each others lives with sex and idle chatter.  Set over a series of hookups, the main focuse of the piece is on a  woman (Helena Wilson) and her regular date (Alistair Toovey). Much of the piece is set in and around the bed. Before and after sex. She wants something more from the regular encounters. He’s more blow and go. And her attempts to get equal treatment only lead to disaster.   Later she finds another man (Gianbruno Spena) who says the right things but it turns out to be the same man in a different package. Along the way the hedonism and partial nudity are at times hilarious. Wilson is engaging as the frank and seemingly carefree woman with one-liners about blowjobs.  Toovey is convincing as a fit young man who’s

The Corsican Job: Sublime @Tristanbates

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With Sublime, the premise of a new heist drama and a promise of it being a provocative play is hard to resist. Its short run at the Tristan Bates Theatre has ended but there were some things to admire about the piece by by Sarah Thomas. The story is that the heistess, Sophie, is back in town. And she's got one week to pull off three jobs to pay back the Corsicans. It's assumed knowledge that you don't want to fuck with the Corsicans . But if you have been to Corsica you probably will understand that immediately. She enlists her brother Sam to help her. But Sam is trying to lead a straight and boring life with his mousy new girlfriend Clara ( Suzy Gill ). But there is so much sexual chemistry between the two you begin to wonder what sort of siblings they are.