Blakeson - Writer
Cardiff-based film, theatre and gig reviews, cultural ramblings, whingeing, short films, etc.
Monday, July 29, 2013
Friday, July 26, 2013
My second British Theatre Guide play review in two days – Mike James’ vaguely autism-themed “Matthew’s Passion” from Winterlight Productions, at the Sherman Cymru. Bottom line – excellent performances, predictable narrative. The dialogue also included the phrase "What's that supposed to mean?", which I've always seen as a lazy, soap-opera cliché.
Thursday, July 25, 2013
My latest reviewing assignment for British Theatre Guide was “Shadow Boxing” from new company Broken Souls – a pugilism-themed one-man play written by actor James Gaddas. It’s a site-specific piece, so the audience were ferried by coach from Chapter to the performance space – the Phoenix Amateur Boxing Gym in Llanrumney (not a part of Cardiff I get to very often). Bottom line: a very effective production of a well-written piece. It may well have been just as enjoyable in an actual theatre, but the venue certainly did a lot of work atmosphere-wise.
Thursday, July 11, 2013
"The Future For Beginners"
The new piece from liveartshow – a company set up by playwright Alan Harris, composer Harry Blake and director Martin Constantine – is “The Future For Beginners”, a chamber musical, which was presented in the Weston Studio at the Wales Millennium Centre. Experimental in the sense that it places naturalistic action in a non-naturalistic context (and that it’s still in development), it’s a parody on relationship control-freakery: a couple have tried to ensure that they stay together forever by planning out every day of their lives on the sheets of paper which dominate the set; but they have lost “Day 1”, and are consequently on the verge of breaking up. The protagonists, attractively played by Oliver Wood and Bethan Mary-James, rehearse future crises, both major and minor, and amusingly let us in on their variously converging and diverging neuroses. There is much artful use of voice-over, as well as video projection; and it was good to see the ukulele placed centre-stage, illustrating the characters’ quirks and aspirations. There was a mixture of songs, both standards (sung by Martin Helliwell, who should perhaps have been more fully integrated into the action) and originals - although the most effective moment was the climactic rendition of Death Cab For Cutie’s “I Will Follow You Into The Dark”. A clever, charming show, which could enjoy a long life.
Thursday, July 04, 2013
I found this tune by Pittsburgh hip-hop artiste Kellee Maize at the Free Music Archive online; the images are from the Prelinger Internet Archive - I even managed to sneak in an appearance by Fred Astaire.