Despite everything that has been happening in the world, last year saw some fantastic theatre being produced under difficult circumstances – here is just a few of our favourite productions (in absolutely no particular order).
Cabaret, Kit Kat Klub: Ok well perhaps this isn’t so surprising to be featured in this list! This completely immersive production directed by Rebecca Frecknall is certainly a great way to experience this musical which sees the Playhouse Theatre completely transformed into the Kit Kat Klub. Moving onto the performances there is plenty to be enjoyed – there is a rawness and darkness throughout that keeps you thoroughly engaged with the journey’s that the characters go on. A real privilege to watch.
Witness for the Prosecution, London County Hall: having been meaning to catch this production for quite some time, this was truly worth the wait. Filled with plenty of plot twists created in a way that only Agatha Christie can do, Witness for the Prosecution was gripping to watch throughout. The story and production was enhanced further by the glorious surroundings of London County Hall – ensuring that the audience felt as close and as part of the story as possible.
A Killer Party, Stream.Theatre: with the ongoing problems in the world, there was still plenty of digital theatre to be enjoyed – including the UK premiere of this hilarious murder mystery inspired musical. Featuring a stellar cast including Lucas Rush, Oscar Conlon Morrey, Rachel Tucker and Cedric Neal – this was certainly a production that provided some much needed laughs!
A Christmas Carol, Old Vic Theatre: finally getting to see this Old Vic Theatre production was a real joy. Filled with atmosphere and joy, it felt really close to the book and was just mesmerising to watch from start to finish. The way in which this story was brought to life meant that it was the perfect way to start off the Christmas season.
MUM, Soho Theatre: new writing was also really strong last year – but this new play from Morgan Lloyd Malcolm really made me sit up and pay attention – particularly given the fact that I knew two people who had recently become mums at this point. Exploring the complexities of becoming a mother for the first time, it was a really powerful experience that asks – what real support is there for new mums?
Frozen the Musical, Theatre Royal Drury Lane: filled with dazzling effects, this production will certainly impress and mesmerise audiences young and old. Every aspect and detail that made the film so popular is included with a few additional lovely touches – not least some lovely new songs that work really well in the context of the show.
Constellations, Vaudeville Theatre: although I only got to see one pairing out of the four for this revival (Peter Capaldi and Zoë Wanamaker), I was impressed by this two handed play that showcases the emotional complexities of a relationship and how it constantly changes depending on the choices you make in life. A really fascinating experience.
This is only a small selection of shows that I was lucky enough to catch – there were certainly many more I could have mentioned if I had more room! But a huge thank you to all those who managed to put on a show last year in such difficult circumstances -here’s to 2022 and much more fantastic theatre!
By Emma Clarendon