7th to 21st March.
List the last 10 things you saw at the theatre in order:
1. The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable (Punchdrunk)
2. The Comedy of Errors (Rose Kingston)
3. A Midsummer Night's Dream (Rose Kingston)
4. The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable (Punchdrunk)
5. Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (Savoy)
6. The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable (Punchdrunk)
7. The Hotel Plays (Langham Hotel)
8. Variation on a Theme (Finborough)
9. Analog.Ue (National; Lyttelton)
10. The A-Z of Mrs P (Southwark Playhouse)
Who was the best performer in number one (The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable)?
I decided it was time to go in as a Studio Executive. Using a secret code given only to people who've been before, and for no extra cost, being a Studio Executive negates the need to queue and gives you an extra scene at the beginning, an exclusive character called Phoebe, and access to a room in the basement that frankly holds more mysteries than it solves. I was extremely charmed by Phoebe from the get-go, even though she doesn't let people hang out in her basement room for very long, and even though at one point she sent me on a path where I ended up literally in the arms of the one character who genuinely scares the willies out of me, so the prize for this one goes to the lovely Zoe Mills.
Why did you go to see number two (The Comedy of Errors)?
Well, it's Propeller, and it's Shakespeare, of course I was going to see it. I was particularly keen not to miss The Comedy of Errors, as I didn't see it last time when it was doing the rounds alongside Richard III, so I'm excited about this opportunity to catch up, and also I enjoy the feeling of hope brought by the fact they've revived a former production. DON'T YOU UNDERSTAND? EVERY TIME THEY FAVOUR A REVIVAL OVER A NEW PRODUCTION, WE DRAW A LITTLE CLOSER TO SEEING RICHARD III AGAIN. IT IS LITERALLY THE BEST SHOW I HAVE EVER SEEN IN MY LIFE.
Can you remember a line/lyric from number three (A Midsummer Night's Dream) that you liked?
Nope, nothing beyond the usual Shakespeare. There was a BUNCH of enjoyable non-Shakespeare lines in The Comedy of Errors, and those are what have lodged in my head from this trip to Kingston.
What would you give number four (The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable) out of ten?
Oh man, I can't offer an objective opinion here. Look at me, I'm a twitching, grubby addict, shivering in the gutter while scraping my pennies together to cover the cost of the next visit and food be damned. I may mourn particular aspects of Faust and The Masque of the Red Death like nothing on earth, but as I get more out of this show with every subsequent visit, I fear that any considered answer would be WELL over 10. Every trip has been different. Every trip has been glorious. Every trip has hit me like a blow to the stomach. Every trip has left me wanting more. I can't. I just can't.
Was there someone hot in number five (Dirty Rotten Scoundrels)?
All things taken into account, this is overall an extremely attractive cast. But as with EVERYTHING ELSE in the show, the award here is taken by the sublime Katherine Kingsley!
What was number six (The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable) about?
Well, it's sort of about a different thing every time depending on your own personal journey through the space (although there is one scene in it called 'The Infidelity Ballet', which is probably a much more accurate subtitle for the production as a whole than 'A Hollywood Fable'). This time, The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable was about men who are desperate for success in the movie industry, who are closer to breaking down completely the more cheerful they seem, and who like to sing catchy songs and dance their way around town. Or 'Desperate Men Who Tapdance', if you want the abbreviated version. The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable. The Drowned Man: An Infidelity Ballet. The Drowned Man: Desperate Men Who Tapdance. It has a ring to it!
Who was your favourite actor in number seven (The Hotel Plays)?
Although the character he played was actually quite nasty, nothing about this evening convinced me that Daniel Ings is not an actor I should continue to follow.
What was your favourite bit in number eight (Variation on a Theme)?
I don't think I can narrow it down to a bit. I enjoyed the entire production immensely. I am increasingly finding it harder to stay awake during matinees on warm days but there was no such problem here!
Would you see number nine (Analog.Ue) again?
Definitely. Absolutely. In a heartbeat.
What was the worst thing about number ten (The A-Z of Mrs P)?
I've been thinking about this and trying so hard to narrow it down to one single worst thing. After much soul-searching and serious consideration, I think the one single worst thing about this production is just that it was bad. It was well-intentioned, but impressively dull and really rather poorly written.
Which was best?
Yeah, let's ask the obsessive who numbers three trips to The Drowned Man in her last ten trips to the theatre what show she liked best, that'll give an unbiased and fair and accurate depiction of what theatre in London is good these days.
Which was worst?
The A-Z of Mrs P. Didn't even have to think about that one.
Did any make you cry?
I think I got away without any weeping at Temple Studios this time, so beyond a mild welling-up at Analog.Ue, I don't believe so.
Did any make you laugh?
Laughed my tail off at The Comedy of Errors, and also A Midsummer Night's Dream and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. Though Analog.Ue was performed by a comedian, I was too busy listening to do more than chuckle.
Which roles would you like to play in any of them?
I would LOVE to be in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. I am pretty good at singing 'Here I Am'.
Which one did you have best seats for?
I somehow got away with a front row, near centre seat for Variation on a Theme, despite having an exceptionally busy day and bursting into the Finborough with only ten minutes to spare. My Dirty Rotten Scoundrels ticket would have been flawless for the price, if not for the awful old men behind me (and Jerry Mitchell) who spent the entire interval honking on about how putrid they thought the piece was and how they'd rather have been at home watching the football. I was pretty disgusted by them.