I was lucky enough to see and review this incredible piece of theatre back in May. Apologies for missing the boat on re-posting my review for Bristol 24/7, but here it is:
As an adult, it is genuinely rare to sit in a theatre and utterly believe. But Shuler Hensley’s performance in The Whale is perhaps the most visceral, convincing, immersive depiction I have ever seen, on any stage. This is one powerful piece of theatre, with award-winning performances from a cast giving their all, in a completely engaging world.
Charlie (Hensley) is not just obese, but morbidly so. The kind of “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape“ “big” that involves hoists, or windows being taken out. But Samuel D. Hunter’s The Whale is not a play about a man being fat. It’s a play about despair, grief and regret; about self-loathing and a suicidal lack of self-worth. It is one of the saddest and most eloquent plays I have ever come across. It’s a play about love….
I’ve just showed this vid to an industry pro, and realised that it might never have made it here – apologies! It’s the 90-sec promo for Glitter Knickers, designed to help it out of its R&D box and onto the next stages. Weirdly, both the actor Lucinda Holloway and I have been asked about the play’s next steps a few times in the last few weeks. So, here’s to some Friday smiling – I hope you enjoy it:
Very happy to have reviewed the opening night of posting Letters to the Moon last night as it starts a tour that takes in Wimbourne, Guildford, Chipping Norton, Malvern and Devizes.
Oh, what a lovely, love-filled, heartwarming evening you will have with Posting Letters To The Moon. Opening night at Bath’s Ustinov Studio (Theatre Royal) looked like a full house for this charming legacy of a show.
But where to start? You could come into this piece through so many different doors. A Brief Encounter fan? An Archers addict? Maybe you’re a soul who loves the “letters from” format, or even “an audience with-“? Perhaps you’re an incurable ’39-’45 nostalgiac?
Whichever door works for you, this space is as welcoming and nourishing as you could possibly want. Huge congrats to Lucy Fleming and Simon Williams – and their family – for sharing these letters in such a generous way. More …
I’ve just reviewed the new Daniel Kehlmann show at the Ustinov, Theatre Royal Bath, for Bristol 24/7. In short, this was a tough review – I wish with all my heart I could have written a happier one. Click the pic to have a read:
Patrick Baladi & Naimh Cusack in Christmas Eve at the Ustinov, Bath – pic, Simon Annand
Ha, make em laugh, eh? More like, make yourself laugh. I just spotted an old post from a year ago: The Awful Art of Unwriting. It’s a confessional, where I admit to not having done a new spec screenplay (as opposed to a play) for about 5 years.
In the last year, I’ve written three: one comedy pilot (30 mins) and 2 dramas, an hour each. They’re each still being polished in their own way, and one of them is under the radical surgeon’s knife, but blimey, it’s really worth a backwards glance from time to time.
Various other projects are still in the cauldron – not least the quantum 2-hander & the glorious, audience’s darling, Glitter Knickers – so if you have a time machine/ magic wand/ producer/ magic money tree, you’re very welcome to drop me a line…;) And meanwhile, new things start to sizzle for theatre and screen (oh, boy, and how….)
Watch this space!
Over on the Glitter Knickers Facebook page, we’re putting out a call for a theatre producer to join the team and get this baby on the road, out of Bath, to the big smoke and beyond!
Deadline 8 Dec – check it out & share it willy-nilly! (you can see a v short trailer for the show here, too)
I used to do a lot of theatre reviewing – when wed to a person I didn’t need to pay to look after our child! – and always wondered whether I should share them here. So, in a new departure, I thought I’d start. Last night I reviewed Nancy Meckler’s production (at Bath’s Ustinov Studio) of Half Life for Bristol 247. Here’s the article – happy reading (runs til 5 Nov- go!)