Something for the weekend sir?

Not sure what to do over the Bank Holiday? The idea of wall-to-wall sport proving too much to bare? Well here are a couple of suggestions for things to go and see discover some theatre that you never even knew existed.

ONE MAN, TWO GUVNORS

Who? James Cordon returns to the stage at the National. Last seen on stage in Alan Bennett’s phenomenally successful The History Boys playing a schoolboy, subsequently seen practically everywhere else. His omnipresence has meant that he has been known to appear in dreams, flashbacks and in the corner of your eye at tube stations.
What? One Man, Two Guvnors is closely based on the 18the Century play The Servant with Two Masters by Carlo Goldoni. It contains many of the classical elements of comedies from this period; class systems, women dressing up as men and general confusion and farcical misunderstandings. James Cordon is a man who (rather unsurprisingly) has two employers (one of whom is a woman pretending to be her dead brother) and you may not be surprised to learn that hilarious shenanigans ensue.
Why? Given Lesbian Vampire Killers and the Horne & Cordon sketch show, people can be forgiven for being wary of seeing a play that seems to be set-up as a celebrity vehicle for James Cordon. However this forgets the naturalism of his performance in Gavin and Stacey and the stagecraft he demonstrated in The History Boys. Reviews have been uniform in praising the production and it seems the National has one of the hits of the Summer on its hand.
Where? National Theatre
When? Until 26 July
How much? £12 – £45 (£5 tickets available for 16-25 year olds)
Tedious one sentence deconstruction: Over-exposed TV actor returns to the stage in an adapted play that has surprised many critics by funnier than imagined.

TACTICAL QUESTIONING

Who? The Tricycle Theatre has developed a reputation for being one of London’s premiere venues for breaking political theatre. Tactical Questioning is the 8th tribunal play that has been produced at the venue and previous subjects have included the Hutton Inquiry, the Saville Inquiry and Guantanamo Bay.
What? There is no denying that Tactical Questioning will be a grim, painful and intense evening at the theatre. It couldn’t be any other way. It is an edited but verbatim account taken from the transcripts of a Public Inquiry into the death of Baha Mousa whilst in the custody of the British army. These performances have come after the closure of the inquiry but before it reports its findings and only contains excerpts from statements taken from those interviewed.
Why? Some plays are enjoyable and some are important. The Tricycle’s Tribunal plays are very much in the latter category. Their importance can be summed up by noting that Guantanamo (2004) was performed at both the Houses of Parliament and on Capitol Hill in Washington, whilst Archbishop Desmond Tutu appeared in their New York production. These plays are a raw and painfully real – real events are depicted with real dialogue, and in doing so drama is created out of what is in reality interminably long and complex proceedings.
Where? Tricycle Theatre
When? June 2nd – July 2nd
How much? £12 – £22
Tedious one sentence deconstruction: Blurring the line between drama and reality, the tribunal productions are unlike anything else on the british stage and Tactical Questioning should be mandatory viewing for anyone with an interest in the workings of international justice.
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