Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Bruno Poet. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Bruno Poet. Sort by date Show all posts

Monday, 13 November 2017

Saint George and the Dragon, National Theatre | Review


Saint George and the Dragon
Olivier Theatre, National Theatre
Reviewed on Friday 10th November 2017 by Olivia Mitchell 
★★★

The National Theatre's current production of Saint George and the Dragon is a modern and ambitious twist on the traditional folk tale of Saint George the dragon-slayer. Described as "a folk tale for an uneasy nation" this production time travels from the medieval times all the way to the current day and questions whether England is losing it's traditional values and whether change is always positive.

Rory Mullarkey's play has faults and drags a little but its interesting and humourous throughout and works extremely well in the space of the Olivier theatre. 

As George himself, John Heffernan is Shakespearean, larger than life, witty and charming- perfect for the role. A particularly funny moment is when he disguises himself as 'Ian' in the 2017 world, raising the question of how much we're willing to change to fit in. The character is interesting because as those around him change, he stays the same and becomes somewhat innocent in nature. This transition from the bold hero, to almost childlike is an interesting watch and the idea that distant 'heros' aren't always what the world needs is especially relevant now when it's being revealed that many Hollywood idol's are not the people we should be looking up to at all.


Julian Bleach is the perfect contrast as the sinister but witty Dragon; his portrayal is fantastically strong and gave me major child-catcher vibes in the second act. As the feisty, voice of reason heroine, Elsa, Amaka Okafor is brilliantly cast.

This show wouldn't be what it is without Rae Smith's outstanding set design which transitions along with the characters seamlessly and adds a simple but strong dimension to the play. From the green fields of medieval England to the factory filled London during the industrial revolution, each set is instantly recognisable. Whilst extremely fitting for the time period, the sets also have a humourous aspect such as the way smoke puffs out of the factories. Accompanied by the great, atmospheric lighting by Bruno Poet we are transported through the history of England.

Overall I don't think this play will be to everyone's taste and it could certainly be trimmed down for a smoother flow but it's definitely interesting and I enjoy how it raises some important and relevant questions whilst still remaining humourous. Its genuinely funny and entertaining and Rory Mullarkey has done a great job of reinventing a traditional tale.


Saturday, 15 October 2016

Miss Saigon: 25th Anniversary Performance (film) | Review



Movie musicals often get a bad rap and with some previously released ones its not surprising, so I was cautious about how the spectacle that is Miss Saigon would translate to film. Before watching the movie I thought that a production as big as this could only really be experienced live in the flesh... I was wrong. This is a momentous and immersive triumph like no movie musical I've seen before. 

Universals HD recording brings every moment of Miss Saigon to life; we hear the background conversations and see all the facial expressions which could easily be missed live at the Prince Edward Theatre. Every breath, song and moment of choreography is perfectly framed with a mix of close-ups and wide angles making the whole production visually stunning. Every magical feature of Bruno Poet's lighting design and Totie Driver and Matt Kingley's fantastic set design is highlighted and glorified.


The whole thing isn't just watching a musical filmed live from a theatre, its a cinematic experience where one feels truly immersed in the production and can relate and attach to the characters even more. I truly have no faults with this film and for the majority of it being filmed in front of a live audience on one night, its really mind boggling how perfect the team have managed to make it!

Of course a review of Miss Saigon would not be complete without mentioning the insane talents of the cast. Although I saw this cast twice live at the theatre, I was even more in awe of their talents watching this recording. The extreme close ups show every emotion that crosses their faces and you can truly see how much they commit making their characters as realistic and provocative as possible.

Eva Noblezada's voice as Kim is just on another level; it actually depresses me how young and talented she is and I can only dream of being so flawless one day. Every note that comes out of her mouth is golden and its worth going to see the film purely to hear I'd Give My Life For You which sent chills down my spine! Jon Jon Briones gets the comedy and depth of the hilarious but calculating engineer down to a tee and I will never be over his performance of The American Dream. Alistair Brammer is the perfect lead, his voice soaring with ease and complementing Eva's dulcet tones entirely. If I could mention every cast member I would but I'm afraid that would take forever so I'll just say that every performance is remarkable and each individual truly shines in this recording.

Whether you've seen the production before or not, you must go and see this film. If you saw the show at the Prince Edward you'll get to see it in an entirely new light and if you haven't seen it before you'll be introduced to one of the most fantastic works of musical theatre in complete and utter style. Its definitely a must-see for musical theatre fans but I am almost certain that anyone will enjoy it. This is a production which is truly, completely and utterly unforgettable and altogether an impeccable cinematic experience. ★★★★

Miss Saigon will be at cinemas on Sunday 16th October 2016 and will then be released on DVD.