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If the pubescent audience I sat with at the Ambassador Theatre is anything to go by, the National Youth Theatre is succeeding, beyond its mission to nurture and mature new talent, in introducing fresh-faced audiences to the rewards of the theatrical experience. As per The Stage, this is a matter of some urgency; the average age of today’s theatre-goer being 52, and the largest subset of the audience belonging to the 65-74 demographic. The theatre may be largely a refuge from the young and restless today, but if today’s audiences aren’t replaced, tomorrow’s houses will be empty.

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde has long captured the fears and imaginations of its readers.  It is a Victorian detective story that, among other topics, explores the duality and complexity of man in his societal trappings.  So it is a refreshing and surprising twist to find The National Youth Theatre REP Company presents a new interpretation of the Robert Louis Stevenson classic, that reimagines the central character as a woman, Harriet Jekyll.  Written by Evan Placey (Consensual, Girls Like That) and directed by Roy Alexander Weise (Mountaintop, JMK 2016 winner) this radical adaptation works to give voice to the unheard stories of the women of the Victorian era, and the silenced characters that linger on the outskirts of the novella’s narrative.

Tucked away just off of Kingsway is the Aldwych Theatre. It is currently home to the beautifully sublime La Soiree. You know you are in for a treat when the tickets themselves are in the form of wristbands and you can hear and smell all the sounds of a very upmarket circus/cabaret. La Soiree is no stranger to the theatre world and has had residencies worldwide with tried and tested acts. I set out below my top 5, and believe me when I say it was a hard choice to make!

So how lucky am I? I did take a punt - I knew it was something to do with the Mamma Mia! cast, and was about an hours’ commitment but had no idea what I was being asked to review. Well, what a lovely surprise I had.

It may be Christmas time, the season of cheer, but who doesn’t love a good tragedy. Well, The Woman in White is the most perfect Christmas tragedy; not via theme but in the sense that no one can be too sad watching a tragedy in which every word is sung. This production, brought to you by Andrew Lloyd Webber himself, is moving in every way you would expect from a musical.

Ding Dong Merrily on High! Tis the season where the West End’s pavements glisten with sparkling snow, mistletoe is hung at the front of house of every show and of course, we all want some Christmas Cheer.  I have a little pick and mix for you to peruse and book over the upcoming season. All tickets can be bought here – but do be quick, just like a hot mince pie fresh from the oven, they are going fast!

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