MONDAY 8 APRIL 2024 THISWEEKCULTURE.COM
DAN COLLINS: DUNE! THE MUSICAL
I was obviously intrigued when I heard about 'Dune! The Musical', because honestly, who wouldn't have their interest piqued by the idea of someone taking the whole of Frank Herbert's epic sci-fi novel and turning it into a one man musical show? 

I've heard a lot of good things about this, and was keen to find out more about the whys and wherefores from its creator and performer Dan Collins. So I did that, ahead of his upcoming dates at the Bread & Roses Theatre. 

CLICK HERE to read this Caro Meets interview.


'Dune! The Musical' is on at the Bread & Roses Theatre from 13-14 Apr. For more information and to book tickets head to the venue website here.



PHILIP HAGEMANN AND MURRAY ROSENTHAL: ROMAN FEVER AND THE HUMAN VOICE
I was really excited to hear about the latest double bill production from Pegasus Opera, co-produced with Hagemann Rosenthal Associates, not least because of the representation offered: the company's aim is to champion diversity in opera and promote emerging artists of African and Asian heritage, and this particular production is very much focused on women.

And, of course, the operas in question tell brilliant stories set to brilliant music, plus they are directed by Josette Bushell-Mingo, and star Alison Buchanan, Nadine Benjamin and Bernadine Pritchett.

'The Human Voice' is based on Jean Cocteau's play and created by the late Francis Poulenc, while frequent Pegasus collaborator Philip Hagemann is the composer who has created 'Roman Fever', based on Edith Wharton's novel.  

I spoke to Philip and producer Murray Rosenthal ahead of the upcoming run. 

CLICK HERE to read this Caro Meets interview.

Pegasus Opera's double bill of 'Roman Fever' and 'The Human Voice' is on at the Royal Academy Of Music's Susie Sainsbury Theatre from 12-14 Apr. Click on this link here to book tickets. 


Shows to see in the week ahead - including performances from people and companies we first discovered at the Edinburgh Festival.


FAMILY STUFF>>

The Showstoppers' Kids' Show | ArtsDepot | 11 Apr
Yet more family stuff for you this week, for yes, it's still the Easter holidays. Those of you who never need to entertain children may skip to the next section if you like. The rest of you might want to consider this North London option, a show by the brilliant musical theatre improvvers Showstoppers at which they will only take suggestions from the kids. Adults will still have a great time though, obv. More here.

The Selfish Giant | Greenwich Theatre | 11-12 Apr (pictured)
Right, let's head south of the river for a show inspired by - though clearly not identical to - Oscar Wilde's short children's story 'The Selfish Giant'. "Grinter is a giant. She lives happily alone in her huge cold house, surrounded by her huge snowy gardens, enclosed by her high, frost-covered walls. Outside the towering walls of her enormous garden, the world has been changing and there is very little green left..." Click here.

The Three Bears | The Albany | 11 Apr
"Deep in the forest live Mammy, Daddy and Baby Bear. Each day the Three Bears head into the woods to collect interesting things to re-use in their home. Soon their cosy house is turned upside down by a colourful whirlwind that threatens to sit in their chairs, eat their porridge and sleep in their beds. It's Goldilocks!" The traditional tale for your little tots aged six and under. More information here.


SHAKESPEAREAN STUFF>>

Macbeth | Jack Studio | 9-13 Apr
Yay, who's up for a bit of Shakespeare? Well, I'll tell you who, actually, year elevens who've got their English Literature papers coming up, though I suppose it might be a bit too late now. Still, you never know, it might help to see a staging of the Scottish Play and bring it all together in that revision addled teenage mind. Anyway, it doesn't have to be for them, this sounds like a great staging for anyone, and it's giving dystopian, post-apocalyptic vibes. Info here.

A Midsummer Night's Dream | Wilton's Music Hall | 9-20 Apr (pictured)
Don't think the next two are any good for either A-Level or GCSE students, but oh they're great great great productions of well loved Shakey stuff. This first one, over at Wilton's Music Hall, comes to you courtesy of one of our very favourite producing companies, Flabbergast Theatre, and this staging promises to "bring the magic of midsummer alive with physical comedy, song, music and masks". Yay, click here.

Portia's Julius Caesar | The Space | 9-20 Apr
Another goodie that takes a somewhat alternative approach, as this is a female centred adaptation exploring fertility, loyalty and family, wherein "the story of Caesar's ambitious reach for power is refocused towards the women of Rome in Shakespeare's political thriller about the price we pay when we fight for our beliefs". Expect some original bard-words in there, but also new female characters. Find out more here.


SOHO STUFF>>

Sam Lake: Aspiring DILF | Soho Theatre | 11-13 Apr (pictured)
I only recently realised that there were three whole Soho Theatre shows on the list for this week's tips, but thankfully I realised it before I organised them into sections, so, here's a full one dedicated to that venue. Let's start with 'Aspiring DILF' Sam Lake, who is "embarking on a mission to ensure he becomes what he believes to be the last respectable form of a man, the Daddy". For more explanation of all that, and to book, click right here.

Playing Latinx | Soho Theatre | 10-13 Apr
Next up, one that we've tipped before actually, but we do stand by that tip, which is why we are doing it again. And also, I've heard even more good things about it since that first tip, so the evidence to suggest that you should go see this is really stacking up. A one person show from Guido Garcia Lueches, it combines spoken word, poetry, comedy and music to explore what the 'latinx' label means, and the lengths we go to in order to fit in. Click here.

Boys On The Verge Of Tears | Soho Theatre | 11 Apr-18 May
"A father waits for his son. Kids hang around skipping school. Fights break out after nights of drinking". This incredibly highly acclaimed, Verity Bargate Award winning play from Sam Grabiner explores what it means to be a man, features five actors playing a total of fifty roles, and is set entirely in a public toilet. Expect a "kaleidoscopic tale of violence and vulnerability". Also expect it to sell out quickly, quick, book here.


FESTIVAL STUFF>>

Elixir Festival | Grand Junction | 12 Apr-2 May
Hurray, now we have some festivals for you. Brilliant. First up is the Elixir Festival at West London's Grand Junction, which celebrates art, music and storytelling from the Middle East and North Africa. There's music from the likes of Ruba Shamshoum and The Ayoub Sisters, as well as theatre performance 'Olive Jar', a celebration of London's Arab communities. Find a list of all the events right about here.

La Linea 24 | multiple venues | 12-22 Apr
Another festival, and it's one that especially appeals to someone like me, because it's a Latin music festival and I love me some Latin music. I expect lots of you lot will also like Latin music, so will be happy to hear about it. Those of you who don't, I am very disappointed in you and would like you to give Latin music another chance, especially as it's so diverse. Anyway, every year La Linea is great and it will be again - take a look at the fab line up here.

May Contain Food May Contain You | Woolwich Works | 10-13 Apr (pictured)
Alright, this isn't remotely a festival, or a festival event, but I put it in this section because I first became aware of the existence of Luca Silvestrini's Protein Dance at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe a very, very long time ago, and it's been a very favourite company of mine ever since. Their shows are always brilliantly compelling and original, and this is immersive and about food. More explanation here.


MORE GREAT STUFF>>

Honey Badger | The Cockpit | 10-13 Apr (pictured)
Final More Great Stuff section, and I suppose I could have called it the theatre section. But it's all great, so that's okay. This one is a UK premiere from Denmark's Nordisk Teaterlaboratorium that takes a look at the consequences of experiencing childhood abuse, and sees a man travelling back in time to relive his past of "neglect, guilt, shame, and the deep longing for love and care". Lots more info on it here.

Hits & Pieces #5 (Spice Girls) | The Cockpit | | 14 Apr
And as we've been at The Cockpit for the last one, let's stay there for this night of four new original short plays inspired by The Spice Girls' 1996 debut smash hit 'Wannabe'. It's the latest 'Hits & Pieces' night by Matchstick Theatre Company, each focusing on short theatre pieces based on nominated songs. I love this idea because I love plays and I love songs. Can't wait to see this, and also what the next song will be! Info here.

Slush Pile | Etcetera Theatre | 9+11 Apr
Bit fascinated by this one, in which three interns at a publishing house have to sort through a heap of unsolicited manuscripts in search of one that is worth committing to print. To their surprise, however, the so called 'Slush Pile' is actually full of great works, making it impossible to decide. Meanwhile, the concerns of a BAFTA winning actor look set to coincide with those of the interns... Find out more here.
At TW:CULTURE we champion the best in fringe theatre, comedy and culture.

Year round, we pick the best shows happening in London and online each week, providing handy Three To See recommendations and interviewing the people behind those productions.

Plus each summer we also cover the biggest cultural event in the world: The Edinburgh Festival.


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