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Review: Books, Theatre, Albums, Movies and Gigs

Anthology

Liverpool Everyman Theatre and city centre

September 28 – October 30

Authors: Robert Farquhar, Lizzie Nunnery, Matthew David Scott, Kellie Smith, Esther Wilson, Laurence Wilson, Jeff Young.
Directors: Alan Lane, Indhu Rubasingham
Producers: Everyman Playhouse and Slung Low
Cast Includes: Hugh Skinner, Matti Houghton, Nicholas Shaw, Emily Pithon, Ken Bradshaw, Eileen O’Brien, Kevin Harvey, Paul McCleary, Stuart Richman.

Running Times: Vary between 40 mins and 1hr 20

‘Anthology promotional image

Everyman Liverpool Playhouse official website


Seven shows running simultaneously in seven different locations makes reviewing The Everyman’s and Slung Low’s Anthology more of a challenge. The answer, however, is simple – enlist help – and, in the spirit of The Everyman, what other choice could there be than to ask students Rick Rowe-Davies and Daniel Lambert, who are currently studying Creative Writing at John Moores University, to pitch in?

With the present Everyman theatre being due for demolition and complete rebuild over the next three years, Anthology is a celebration of everything the theatre has become known for over the past forty; gritty innovative writing that reaches out to its audiences courtesy of quality actors and exquisite directors and designers.

All seven stories are tied by one unique, unbreakable bond, the people of Liverpool, and it is their stories that make this production so moving. Headsets and props involve the audience from the off as the actors lead them from the theatre on adventures in individual locations that become characters in their own right thanks to some fabulous word craft, acting and direction.

And such variance in the plays should also be applauded. Matthew David Scott’s We Sing Faster in the City, for example, unfolds from memory and magic and discovers the truth about love.  Lizzie Nunnery’s Unquiet is a chilling tale of redemption whereas Jeff Young’s Rag and Bone is one of abandonment and rediscovery told across the generations by the quite brilliant Eileen O’Brien.

There may have been one or two technical glitches along the way during the evening, but if Anthology is a measure of the old Everyman’s undying spirit and sense of purpose then the new theatre has more than enough on which to fall back and so build its own reputation in the years to come.

Chris High

Everyman Liverpool Playhouse official website
www.everymanplayhouse.com


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“Writing gets me away for a while' from this world and into one where I, alone, can make or
break the rules as I see fit.” - Chris High 2003.
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