Love Is Not Enough

New company Beg Borrow Steel makes a promising debut with this story of a west London Jamaican family forced to confront their dark past by an estranged daughter who returns for her late father’s memorial service and the Notting Hill Carnival. Playwright Justin Marosa developed and staged a version of … Continue Reading Love Is Not Enough

Soul Sister

Bookended by Emi Wokoma’s Tina Turner reflecting on her rocky road to success, this musical about the megastar’s marriage to Ike and rise to stardom comes across as a simplified rerun of Turner biopic ‘What’s Love Got to Do with It’. It boasts a stunning central performance but lacks substance. … Continue Reading Soul Sister


The Finborough once again demonstrates its keen eye for a timely revival with this gem by JB Priestley. Unseen in London for 70 years, its story of a small import office facing bankruptcy seems painfully prescient. The first half begins as an unhurried, witty sketch of the amusing oddities of … Continue Reading Cornelius


With its wife-beating antihero and early dramatic climax, it’s no mean feat to make ‘Carousel’ a satisfying experience. Opera North’s revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s most operatic musical is richly orchestrated and vibrant – even if it doesn’t capture all of its darker edges. An impressive set featuring a lightbulb-lit … Continue Reading Carousel

The Revenger’s Tragedy

The engineered cliffhanger that ends the first half of this fast-paced, blackly funny production isn’t followed by a ‘duff duff’, but it could be. This is Jacobean tragedy via ‘EastEnders’ – and it works. Thomas Middleton’s lurid, camp tale of a man’s elaborate revenge on the duke who murdered his … Continue Reading The Revenger’s Tragedy

The Great Gatsby Musical

F Scott Fitzgerald’s iconic novel about 1920s America continues its 2012 onslaught on the British stage with this musical adaptation. Don’t panic about people singing about hit-and-runs though; it’s handled more subtly than that. But perhaps inevitably, some of the book’s desolate beauty and power is missing. Linnie Reedman has … Continue Reading The Great Gatsby Musical