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Lucy Popescu’s theatre news: Modest Little Man; The Good Dad; Coppelia; Prison Game; Carousel; White Witch; Camp Siegfried

02 September, 2021 — By Lucy Popescu

Prison Game

TRY to catch Francis Beckett’s Modest Little Man, Upstairs at the Gatehouse until September 5. It begins in May 1945, when Britain celebrated victory and cheered Winston Churchill. But revolution is in the air. How does Clement Attlee, “a modest little man with plenty to be modest about”, rise to the challenge?

Gail Louw’s one-woman play The Good Dad (A Love Story), performed by Sarah Lawrie, is at the Hope Theatre until September 11. Based on real-life events from the 1980s, this haunting family drama is told from the unique perspectives of mother, daughter and sister. Directed by Anthony Shrubsall.

• World-renowned choreographer Kevan Allen’s new version of Léo Delibes’ comic ballet, Coppelia, is at the Cockpit Theatre September 2-11. Franz falls in love with a young woman who sits on her balcony reading a book. He wants to marry her even though he is already engaged to Swanhilda. His fiancé discovers Coppelia is actually a life-size doll that belongs to the mad scientist, Dr Coppelius. Allen immerses the audience into the sometimes-unsettling mind of the doctor and his relationship with the wider community of villagers. His company combines a diverse mix of styles that cross all genres of dance.

Prison Game by Marcus Hercules is Downstairs at the Pleasance Theatre from Sept 7-11. When prison is your world, how do you function within society? This one-man performance is the story of how prison can define a man. Developed using real life accounts, Prison Game deals with the effects of institutionalisation on the psyche of an individual and the people around them.

• While it’s still warm(!), don’t miss Rodgers and Hammerstein’s classic musical Carousel, featuring a score that includes If I Loved You and You’ll Never Walk Alone at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre until September 25. Timothy Sheader directs with choreography by Drew McOnie.

Barry Reckord’s White Witch is at Bloomsbury Theatre from September 7-18. Set in Jamaica against the backdrop of the 18th-century slave trade, it follows the fortunes of Annie Palmer, a white woman who, following her affair with a black man, is married off to a plantation owner. Incensed by the death of her lover and her own brutal treatment, she rebels against her marriage. But after a string of murders, rumours of witchcraft are rife.

• Inspired by the 1930s summer camp, run exclusively for American youth of German descent on New York’s Long Island, Bess Wohl’s Camp Siegfried is at the Old Vic September 7-October 30. On the brink of the Second World War, two teenagers embark upon a relationship, each searching for identity and acceptance. But soon, they become dangerously consumed by the camp’s real aim: the preaching of Nazi ideology.


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