Southampton's Mayflower Theatre asked me to go on a 24-hour solo adventure to preview the world stage premiere of Band of Gold at Nottingham's Theatre Royal before it arrives in our city in February.
It's time for my first theatre review of 2020, and I'm kicking off the new decade by heading Down Under with the dazzling cult hit Priscilla, Queen of the Desert at Southampton's Mayflower Theatre.
This is a list of the shows that have really stuck with me right to the end of the year; the ones that still pop into my head when I think of 2019's highlights; the ones I would urge you to see if you get the opportunity in 2020.
Last weekend I had four shows in a row; this means four late nights, four ways of saying a show was good (or bad!), and four more programmes to add to my collection. It was intense, and tiring, but so, so worth it!
It's incredible how one woman on a bar stool can captivate an audience for almost two hours solid with just pure and simple storytelling, no props and minimal sound effects. It's a testament to Waller-Bridge's performance, which has the audience in limbo somewhere between heartbreak and hilarity.
Many of us grew up watching puppets on screen who helped us to navigate the world and learn our ABCs. Now that we're adults, we're still learning, but there are seemingly no friendly, furry friends to offer advice and amusement. Except...there are. And they live on Avenue Q!
It's been a few years since I read Khaled Hosseini's A Thousand Splendid Suns; but I remember being so incredibly moved by the story. So when the stage adaptation arrived at Nuffield Southampton Theatres at the end of its UK tour, I was very keen to see it – and, I'll admit, I had to remind myself of the plot a little beforehand too.
Directed by Michelle Smith, Silent Mind is an informative and emotional production that follows four different strangers whose paths cross at one train station, all embarking on journeys of self-discovery and change.
The classic story has come to life, leaping from the page and onto the stage and bringing all the magic of Roald Dahl and Quentin Blake with it, and a few new treats to boot.
You can imagine my joy when the writer of The Crown created a new show for my local theatre, Nuffield Southampton Theatres. Peter Morgan, along with director Samuel Hodges, have brought the Queen's most intimate conversations to life in The Audience.