Janne Robberstad

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London 2014

By spotogspindel | July 30, 2014

New York may have Broadway. But London has it´s West End. And the theatre they produce here is truly world-class! My London-week was filled with input. We´ve had theatre-meetings, but part of working in the theatre is to go see shows too. You always learn something from a show, good or bad. It´s been 3 years since I was in London for more than a day, so I had quite a bit of catching up to do! The repertoire had almost completely changed. Let me share some of it with you:

First up was the musical Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. This was the show I had the biggest expectations for, and which I was most disappointed in. Not because it was bad, but the music was so forgettable. The set was pretty awesome, and the costumes were nice, especially the oompha-loompas´. The story is fun of course, like Roald Dahl often is, and some of the kids playing in it, were really, really talented! Nevertheless, it was actually a bit… boring, to be honest.

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The next show was anything but boring! The dramatization of Shakespeare´s Richard III with Martin Freeman (Watson in Sherlock) as the violent king. And if there is any doubt: yes, he IS a magnificent actor!

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The show is staged in the winter months of 1979, the winter of dis-content, filled with political unease in Britain, and with a big, general strike.

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Next up is The Book of Mormons. A fun-filled feel-good laughter-bomb with catchy music and never a dull moment. Absolutely well worth the time, and I´d like to see it again. the brilliant thing about it, is that the humor is not putting anyone down, it´s more self-irony than viciously laughing on someone else´s behalf.

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The set here was also pretty awesome. Downside: Insanely expensive tickets!

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In the evening we caught a traditional fares by Oscar Wilde: The importance of being Earnest. I don´t like farces, never have. But this one as the best one I´ve seen. In other words: for a fares, it was good. I even laugh a couple of times. And the set was a delight, a traditional, realistic set with historically correct costumes.

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Next up is what turned out to be my favorite this week: The curious incident with the dog in the night-time. It was a strong story about a boy with Asberger´s decease. His deception to play a detective in solving a mystery, results in uncovering more secrets than he can handle. And it truly shows how “people can be confusing”, to use his own words.

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I don´t think I´ve ever seen such a well-polished co-ordination of set-, light-, film- and sound-design. They mix together perfectly, and invites the audience into the main-character´s perception of what goes on around him.

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Finally: Shakespeare in Love, the dramatization of the movie. A lovely stage-version, where the musicians where in roles as musicians on stage. Sweet, romantic, and with a relatively realistic ending (which honestly is kind of a relief in the sugar-coated Disney-versions a lot of entertainment concludes with today)

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Such a super treat to see so much theatre! And such great productions! Excellent actors, truly talented designers, talent both on- and back-stage. The London-stage really is THE place for experiencing excellent theatre, be it for tourists or professionals, – the talent is undisputed.

Topics: Diverse, travel | No Comments »

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