Skip to main content

Review of UoN Fringe: All To Myself by The Mages Guild at The Platform, Northampton

The Mages Guild, consisting of solo performer Rhiannon Flambard, presents in All To Myself, perhaps the most curious of offerings in 2018 UoN Fringe event.

Based on Jonathan Coulton's concept album Solid State (it's really rather cool, so check it out), All To Myself is set in a world where an apocalypse, of the robot revolution kind, has left our character cooped up in a bunker, tin-hatted and awaiting the return of the mysterious Kurzweil.

It's extremely quirky, as perhaps befits its performer, who from previous shows, clearly has a quirky, individual personality, making this an apparently very personal construction, but without getting bogged down in any issues too much.

It's also at times extremely funny, with neat jokes about dead angels, and a great "plot twist" moment, that the audience relished. It's also extremely natural in delivery from Flambard, lines in this script are simply thrown away often, in a way you might barely hear them like someone would talking to themselves.

It's not a total success, simply because of both the brilliance and inherent issues of the space it is performed in. I chose to sit in the third row, and for this show with seating all on one level, it was a mistake. Even my giant six foot plus form failed to see a lot of what was going on at ground level. I ended up watching the shadow on the wall at times, and with the arrival of the robotic invader, this actually ended up giving it an interesting spin. However, I regret clearly missing some of the action at times.

I really enjoyed All To Myself though, it's full of natural material, delivered with a huge belief in the material by Flambard, and it was easily one of my favourite pieces of the Fringe.

Performance reviewed: Monday 26th March 2018 at The Platform, Northampton.

The UoN Fringe ran between Friday 23rd and Monday 26th March 2018.

Popular posts from this blog

Review of Hacktivists by Ben Ockrent performed by R&D Youth Theatre at Royal & Derngate (Underground), Northampton

The National Theatres Connections series of plays had been one of my highlights of my trips to R&D during 2014. Their short and snappy single act style kept them all interesting and never overstaying their welcome. So I was more than ready for my first encounter with one of this years Connections plays ahead of the main week of performances at R&D later in the year. Hacktivists is written by Ben Ockrent, whose slightly wacky but socially relevant play Breeders I had seen at St James Theatre last year. Hacktivists is less surreal, but does have a fair selection of what some people would call odd. Myself of the other hand would very much be home with them. So we are presented with thirteen nerdy "friends" who meet to hack, very much in what is termed the white hat variety. This being for good, as we join them they appear to have done very little more than hacked and created some LED light device. Crashing in to spoil the party however comes Beth (Emma-Ann Cranston)

Review of Shrek (NMTC) at Royal & Derngate (Derngate), Northampton

Three and a half years ago, in a land far far away, in a world very different to the one we are now in, I saw the touring professional production of Shrek The Musical , it was a mixed bag of quality, tilted extremely heavily in favour of one particular character (not the one you might expect) and not firing on all cylinders much of the time. One and a half years after my last visit to the Derngate theatre, I return to see the homegrown Northampton Musical Theatre Company's own take on the very same show. Would they be able to breathe more life into the show than the professionals did in that distant land? It is a bit of a yes and no really. Pretty much all of this is done to the best possible standard, and at times, with being an amateur show you could easily forget, they all have normal day jobs. The show oozes professional quality at times. The set looks magnificent, the costumes (from Molly Limpet's Theatrical Emporium) are superb, and as ever with NMTC, the backstage team c

Review of Theft at the Castle Theatre Studio, Wellingborough

The comedy-thriller Theft by Eric Chappell tells the story of an anniversary celebrating couple returning to the devastation of their home being ransacked in a burglary. However, this ransacking pales in comparison to the ransacking of their lives that then occurs as home truths are revealed. Anyone old enough to remember the works of Theft writer Chappell ( Rising Damp and Only When I Laugh ), could be forgiven for thinking that this 1996 play might feel a little dated for a 2021 audience. However, bar a few references much of their time now (the weaker sex and female priests for instance), Theft still feels comfortable in the 2021 world, where many of us just want both a good evening of theatre and a good bit of fun. With Theft from the highly regarded Wellingborough Technical Players, they get just that. The action starts as we find the man of the house John Miles played by Graham Breeze returning, very angry, to his home. He is a rightfully boisterous character, channelling all th