Monthly Archives: July 2014

Artistic Director of Circus Troupe Circa, Yaron Lifschitz speaks to Theatrefullstop ahead of this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival!

YaronFor centuries, our perceptions of the circus have been fixed into believing that the art form is a set genre, devoted to showcasing a selection of the weird and the wonderful, from contortion artists to jugglers, trapeze artists to clowns. Fast forward to the 21st century, and Artistic Director of Circa, Yaron Lifschitz updates the traditional art form into a thematic and imaginative playground full of wonder amazement. As the founder of the internationally acclaimed Circa, noted for their ambitious and awe inspiring productions, Yaron has witnessed the company’s popularity go from strength to strength. Having taken their performance of Beyond worldwide, Circa will be making a pit stop in Edinburgh for the next month as they take on this year’s Festival. Ahead of their performances, I was able to speak to Yaron about his inspirations for the production, what he’s looking forward to the most at this year’s festival and why it’s important to not take yourself too seriously!

Yaron, you are the Artistic Director of Circa, who will be showcasing the critically acclaimed Beyond at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival from 30th July. Could you describe the concept of the production?
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Timon of Athens @ The Space Theatre Review

Performed by the newly formed Lock and Key Theatre, Timon of Athens is renowned as one of Shakespeare and Middleton’s most challenging plays. Director Alice Langley’s production is set in modern day London, with themes such as losing wealth, poverty and the fickleness of money. The play is certainly relevant to modern day issues, so the idea of it being contemporised appealed to me. However I felt that Langley made some strange decisions when it came to the stylising of characters which completely clashed with the idea of the production being modernised.

Timon of Athens

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Porgy and Bess @ Regents Park Open Air Theatre

Rarely performed, Gershwin’s magnum opus juxtaposes a bleak story of poverty, death and drug addiction with a richly complex score. The work is a big ask and perhaps this is why it rarely attempted on the London stage, yet Timothy Sheader’s production for the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre did not disappoint. It was a grey Monday evening when I was transported to the palpable heat and poverty of Catfish Row where we met Bess, a young, vulnerable women addicted to drugs and dependent on men around her to fund her habit and give her a place to stay. Her current sponsor is Crown, a huge terrifying man with whom she has a volatile relationship. Crown kills a man and goes into hiding and Bess moves in with Porgy, an isolated cripple. They fall in love but Bess struggles to free herself from her old life.

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Cirque Du Cabaret @ London Wonderground Review

If an evening comprising of burlesque, dangerous stunts and nipple tassels sounds appealing to you, then look no further than Cirque Du Cabaret. Currently performing as part of the London Wonderground on the Southbank, Cirque Du Cabaret promised an evening of fun and they certainly delivered. With drinking and audience involvement encouraged, it gave us all a chance to relax in the electric atmosphere of the Spiegeltent.

Cirque Du Cabaret

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Clouds @ The Queen Elizabeth Hall (Southbank Centre)

Aracaladanza is a Madrid based company that has been touring the world and sharing their work for almost two decades. At its root is Enrique Cabrera that is also responsible for the concept and direction of their latest show: Clouds (Nubes). This company combines contemporary dance and a creative use of props and scenic elements to produce quality shows aimed at children and families.

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The Last Days of Limehouse @ The Limehouse Town Hall Review

Last Thursday I made the trip to East London to a Town Hall to see The Last Days of Limehouse, a work which explored the dismantling of the original London Chinatown and its lost legacy. The play focussed on Eileen Cunningham , who grew up in Limehouse’s Chinatown before moving to New York. When she returns, she finds her childhood home and community facing annihilation under the guise of “slum clearance” and “progress” and so she organises a campaign of resistance. The play centred on Eileen’s attempts to resist the total eradication of the original Chinatown and how the community would cope with the ramifications of the council’s decision.

The Last Days of Limehouse. Photo Credit Robert Workman (3)

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Shark Tank @ The Stanley Picker Gallery Review

“Why did I create this exhibition? I wanted money!” And with this line so the tone is set for Shark Tank, a convivial lampooning of the vapid world of modern art. The protagonist Veronica is a gallery owner, whose idealised views of art and artistic vision clash with the reality of selling out in a money obsessed art world. As her gallery struggles to stay afloat it is the opening night of a new exhibition that will either make or break her. Everything looks great, the art is beautifully hung and the “posh snacks” are waiting to be consumed. There’s one problem however- no one’s been invited.

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Musical Theatre performer Mimi Edwards speaks to Theatrefullstop about starring in Edinburgh Festival favourite, NewsRevue!

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When I say the word ‘news’, what do you think of? Suited and booted news presenters? Received Pronunciation? Complex terminology? Serious Headlines? Pristine news room sets? Politics? If you’ve said yes to two or more of these then prepare for your perception of the news to be changed! Celebrating a glorious 35 years this summer, the sharp and satirical crowd pleaser, NewsRevue returns to this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival to offer its alternate look on the ever changing world of Current Affairs. Ahead of this year’s performances, I was able to speak to Musical Theatre performer, Mimi Edwards about her stand out news story of the year, taking part in a Guinness World Record Breaking show and the reason behind NewsRevue’s success.

Mimi, you’ll be starring in this year’s edition of Edinburgh Fringe staple, NewsRevue. How are you feeling ahead of this year’s festival?

I’m so excited. Edinburgh is such a wonderful city – I’ve been a few times but this will be my first time participating in the festival. Everyone I’ve spoken to who has done it before have all said the same thing of the experience – it’s the craziest but most amazing time of your life!

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The Sonneteer @ The Landor Theatre Review

The performance reviewed was part of warm-up run for the Fringe Festival according to a post show discussion. Can you create interweaving love stories by stringing together some of Shakespeare‘s Sonnets? Yes. Should you? Maybe not. The Sonneteer brings together two stories; one centered around a middle-aged lecturer and his 23 year student, the other between The Bard and his Patron.

Sonneteer

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Last Days of Limehouse @ Limehouse Town Hall Review

Progress at what price? That is the question posed by Yellow Earth‘s Last Days of The Limehouse. In a fully promanade setting at the old Limehouse Town Hall, the performance allows the audience to step into a Limehouse Chinatown in 1958, a place many Londoners are unaware even existed.

The Last Days of Limehouse. Photo Credit Robert Workman (4)

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