Saturday, 10 August 2013

Eight Shows in Five Days - Day 1

The time came where I planned to do what I love doing best at the moment is visiting the theatre!  I couldn't think of anywhere to go other than the London's West End!  Before I knew it I was on the train down to London.  On arrival I made my way to St Paul's Cathedral and checked into my room at the nearby youth hostel.  After a very bad experience in a hostel dorm last year I refuse to stay in them anymore!

The Ladykillers

Soon I was walking along the river embankment from St Paul's to Waterloo Bridge where I got to the Vaudeville Theatre on The Strand for the first show of my trip, The Ladykillers.  I saw Graham Linehan's black comedy earlier on in the year when it was on tour at the Leeds Grand Theatre.  

The London cast was strong including John Gordon Sinclair, Simon Day, Ralf Little (playing the criminals) and Angela Thorne (Mrs Wilberforce).  Earlier on the day I read an interview in the Metro about Ralf Little and he mentioned doing The Ladykillers.  To my delight I got another upgrade at the theatre (had one when I saw Great Expectations earlier on in the year) from the Grand Circle to the Dress Circle.  The seat I sat in was least twice the value of my original seat.  I wasn't complaining!  I enjoyed and appreciated the comedy even more and the plot is so unique with the criminals posing as musicians and an old lady with her parrot for company.  Further information can be found on the official website.

Charlie & the Chocolate Factory 

After some food at Itsu I went to Covent Gardens for my evening show.  I booked to see Sam Mendes's new musical Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.  It was choc-house full and we had a complete cast including Douglas Hodge (Willy Wonka), Nigel Planer (Grandpa Joe) and Jasna Ivir (Mrs Gloop).  I saw Jasna Ivir once as Carlotta in The Phantom of the Opera in 1997 so it was nice to see her on stage again.  Despite my uncomfortable seat in the balcony, I had a nice clear view of the stage.

However I can say I enjoyed the musical a lot more than I expected and was very impressed with the use of visuals on stage and also the fresh musical numbers.  I highly recommend this show and I advise you all to book in advance as it's very popular at the moment.  Please check out the official website for further information. I've now done a personal detailed review via this post.

After the show I've got the bus back to the hostel and I was still deciding what show I should day ticket on the following day!

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