|MONDAY 29 MARCH 2021||THISWEEKCULTURE.COM|
|ROSS MCGREGOR: TALKING GODS
When I was a young person, I was fairly obsessed with the myth and legend of the ancient world, and it’s a passion that hasn’t dimmed much with time.
So when I heard about producing company Arrows & Traps’ upcoming project ‘Talking Gods’, I was immediately interested: it’s a five day festival bringing together five filmed plays about the characters of Greek mythology, living in modern times.
To find out more about what to expect from the films, and what inspired them, I spoke to Ross McGregor, artistic director of Arrows & Traps, and writer of the plays.
CLICK HERE to read this Caro Meets interview.
One play in the ‘Talking Gods’ line up premieres each night from 5-9 Apr. Each is followed by a live Q&A, and will remain online and free to access following the initial broadcast. See the company website here.
|With full-on COVID restrictions still in place, this week we are tipping the best in digital culture from across the UK - including online shows from performers and companies we first discovered at the Edinburgh Festival.|
THREE THINGS FOR KIDS>>
Sir Willoughby’s Challenge | Greenwich Theatre | 1-10 Apr
We’re giving the young ones a section to themselves this week, on account of the fact that most of them will be starting a school holiday soon, or may already have broken up, depending on where they are. Most of these shows seem timed to entertain your children over the Easter break, which is good. Let’s start with this rather intriguing treat from Greenwich Theatre, an interactive online adventure featuring members of the acting company of the venue’s production of ‘The Wolves Of Willoughby Chase’: “Explore the mansion where the cousins live, hide from Miss Slighcarp’s sidekicks, grab your disguise, sneak past the wolves that are trying to break in and make sure you find the code and save their friend!” For ages six to twelve, info here.
Rapunzel | Chickenshed Theatre | 2 Apr-30 Sep
We thought we might head over now to Chickenshed (well, virtually, obviously) with a recommendation to view a recording of their 2017 staging of ‘Rapunzel’, which is suitable for over-fives and becomes available on Thursday. “Rapunzel has little memory of her life before the tower, but yearns to be free. The woods that surround the tower are full of fantastic and astounding creatures – and while Rapunzel’s famous long hair may give her incredible abilities, she learns that her true strength comes from within”. It will be broadcast via YouTube, see the venue website here for more info and the link.
Eggs On Legs | Little Angel Theatre | 30 Mar-12 Apr (pictured)
Another rather fun sounding interactive show, this time aimed at your younger children aged three to eight: “Meet a family of zany eggs on legs, living in a lost pocket of the globe. One day the wind blows a huge egg into their tree and they are excited to play with it. But what happens if it hatches and can they protect it from the slithery snake? You will never look at an egg in the same way again”. Well, I’m sold and I am a fully grown adult, so I reckon your small ones will agree with me on how eggsiting this looks. Yeah, OK, groan all you like, you’re not going to stop me. Eggsit this way for more info and to book.
THREE THEATRICAL THINGS>>
A Blue Something | The Space | 30 Mar-1 Apr (pictured)
“Chris, Lucy, Hervey and Mandy are stuck in a waiting room. Be careful and trust no one, for they all have their own secret to keep. Time passes and for better or for worse, they keep on meeting. It’s a blue something that ties them together and they can’t seem to let go”. A rather interesting sounding play by Magali Jeger that explores themes of estranged relationships, addiction, recovery, and success, and is staged using “visual elements together with a combination of naturalism and movement as a tool for expression and storytelling”. For more information and to book, see this page here.
Is Now A Good Time? | Out Of Chaos Theatre | until May
This is another one of those interesting and innovative things that have come about because of the nature of our pandemic year, I think: a play delivered down the phone, to you, in your own home. It’s doing what I think might be called a ‘virtual tour’ of UK venues and begins a stint at Bedford’s The Place from next week. “Sam and Alex work in the same call centre. Sometimes they sit next to each other. They really love their job but there’s something missing. You might need to help them figure out what that is”. See this page here for information and booking links.
Playfight | Finborough Theatre | 1-8 Apr
“Kiera, Zainab and Lucy are smart, outrageous and savvy. They’ve figured out that there are some things school sex ed lessons don’t cover. Now, as they grow from girls into women, they’re going to find the answers… But nothing ever happens in their town, and they’re fifteen, so what do they know?” This sounds great, and not just because it deals with some issues that have been concerning me for a while: including the rise in violence in mainstream pornography and the ‘rough sex defence’, and the hyper-sexualisation and exploitation of young people. The play, by Julia Grogan, is the winner of the 2020 ETPEP Competition for new UK playwrights, and stars Helen Monks, Robyn Cara and Hannah Millward. Read more here.
THREE FUNNY THINGS>>
Comedy In A Brewery | 1 Apr (pictured)
This is one for fans of both beer and comedy, and an event which presumably wants to help you create that comedy club atmosphere at home. The full ticket price is quite high, but that includes your beer, as well as access to a show featuring a rather impressive line up-of comedians – plus, if you are not a fan of beer, you are allowed to buy a ticket for just the comedy. And who is involved? The likes of John Robins, Lou Sanders, Ben Target, James Dowdeswell and Naz Osmanoglu. I’ve been given a couple of different links. This one is for if you want six beers; this one is if you want twelve (and it seems like better value), but also for if you just want a comedy ticket. You must act today though, because it’s last orders 29 Mar.
Grave New World | Stuart Laws | from 31 Mar
“Stuart Laws takes an in-depth look at life after a pandemic and how the familiar we knew has changed forever. This four-part mini series asks the questions we’ve been afraid to ask like ‘What’s on at the cinema?’, ‘How have relationships evolved?’ and ‘What are risk biscuits anyway?’ Join Stuart and a huge host of guest stars as he discovers a Grave New World”. A comedy series in four shots, all of which will be available on demand from Vimeo shortly, to rent for a 48 hour period or buy and keep forever, presumably, or as long as Vimeo and civilisation continue. You can watch a trailer, and pre-order, here.
Lift Off For Laughs | 3 Apr
This is a live virtual comedy fundraiser from North West Air Ambulance Charity and Collywobblers Comedy Club, and some of our favourite most excellent acts grace the line up: Sindhu Vee, Patrick Monahan, Fiona Allen and Brabantia are MCed by Sion James. There’s a whole great long spiel of information here, as well as the link to book tickets. And while we’re talking about Sindhu Vee, because we were, I have it on good authority that she’s one of Robyn Perkins’ guests on the next edition of ‘Comedy For The Curious’, appearing alongside Paul Savage to talk about forgiveness. Yes, I did that, I got yet another mention of ‘Comedy For Curious’ into your weekly recommendations.
THREE MORE INTERESTING ONLINE EVENTS>>
Celebrate Youth Dance | The Place | 1-5 Apr
This sounds fun, a collection of three filmed dance pieces featuring young people aged from eleven to nineteen, which I feel may well prove inspiring for any dance-loving teens in your care. The first, ‘K-Pop Together’, features – as you might expect – K-Pop style choreography from workshop participants. The second is ‘Are We Still Doing This’, by Shuffle, The Place’s youth dance company for young people aged nine to fourteen years, led by artistic director Ihsaan De Banya. And the third, ‘Can You See What I Feel’, is from Shift, the venue’s youth dance company for fourteen to nineteen year olds, supported by rehearsal director Lucy Evans. For more information see this page here.
Ute Lemper: Rendez-Vous With Marlene | FANE/Crazy Coqs | 4-11 Apr
Singer, cabaret star and actress Ute Lemper is behind this performance based on a true story, her own experience of a phone conversation with Marlene Dietrich more than 34 years ago in Paris. “Ahead of her time, Dietrich was a legend as an actress, singer, fashion icon, and free spirited bisexual androgynous hedonist with a life-long hatred of autocrats and nationalists. Lemper interprets some of Dietrich’s most beautiful songs and recounts some captivating secrets of her life”. For more information and to book, see this page here.
A Week Of Trans Visibility | Studio 3 Arts | 29 Mar-2 Apr
International Trans Day Of Visibility falls on 31 Mar, and Barking and Dagenham’s Studio 3 Arts has organised a week of things to mark it. I say ‘things’ because it’s quite diverse. There’s the release of Spotify playlists of music by trans artists, and a YouTube playlist of trans comedy, as well as a Q&A with a panel of trans creators, an online watch party of ‘Disclosure: Trans Lives On Screen’, plus an online dance party for LGBTQIA+ people. Take a closer look at what’s happening right about here.