Movement, Puppetry & Theatre

EAST REVIEWS

★★★★★ The Londonist https://londonist.com/london/theatre-and-arts/eastenders-meets-clockwork-orange-in-islington ‘weaponising words is only half the story here. Berkoff has a penchant for pumping his plays full of kineticism, and the cast's ability to sketch scenes using little else but their bodies, drags us into nightclub dust-ups, mucky backseat cinema fumbles — and the full horror, and horrific boredom, of the characters' so-called lives.

★★★★★ Stage Talk http://www.stage-talk.com/Review_East.html ‘Physically and vocally demanding, the ensemble work together exceptionally…fierce, physical, and ferocious…A fantastic production.’

★★★★★ I Thank You Theatre http://ithankyoutheatre.blogspot.co.uk/2018/01/way-out-east-kings-head-theatre.html ‘every inch of the limited stage area [is used] to push [the] players through exhaustive choreography as they fight, mime silent movies, turn into motorbikes (you have to see how Condon and Craze combine for that sequence!) and dance…visually and emotionally inventive…’

★★★★★ Everything Theatre http://everything-theatre.co.uk/2018/01/east-kings-head-theatre-review.html ‘a frenzied and enlightened mix of physicality and verbal zest. …The text, whilst brilliant, is not the absolute highlight of this show. The physical performance from all the cast…is startlingly vibrant.’

★★★★★ Stage Review http://www.stagereview.co.uk/theatre-review/east-review/ ‘splendidly taut…Don’t miss this unmistakably in-your-face and spirited production.’

★★★★★ http://www.londonpubtheatres.com/berkoffs-east-review/4594179360 ‘An incredible, exhausting journey…Not to be missed.’

★★★★★ Theatre Bubble http://www.theatrebubble.com/2018/01/east-kings-head-theatre/ ‘This is a must-see production…’

 

★★★★ The Reviews Hub http://www.thereviewshub.com/east-kings-head-theatre-london/ ‘[this] raucous, animated production hardly gives itself time to breathe. …If Berkoff’s works still remain something of an acquired taste, this is a revival that should encourage many more to acquire it.’

 

★★★★ British Theatre http://britishtheatre.com/review-east-kings-head-theatre 'Tightly directed by Jessica Lazar with movement director Yvan Karlsson, this is an electrifying journey through East End life, as exciting as a rollercoaster ride on Southend Pier.’

 

★★★★ Jewish Renaissance http://www.jewishrenaissance.org.uk/blog/review-theatre-east/ ‘a marriage of precisely choreographed physical theatre and heightened language...glorious and unashamed…at once lusty and perfectly calibrated. …A riotous, unapologetically filthy delight.’

★★★★ The Stage https://www.thestage.co.uk/reviews/2018/east-review-kings-head-theatre-london/ ‘remarkable…[the] five-strong cast wriggle and writhe, spit and snarl their way across the intimate, sparse space like grotesque marionettes, all to a cheery Cockney piano accompaniment. ’

★★★★ London City Nights http://www.londoncitynights.com/2018/01/review-east-at-kings-head-theatre-11th.html ‘energetic and lively physical performances. Characters turn into motorbikes and are driven around the stage, fall into a cod music hall mime act, run through about twenty different kinds of dance in a minute or, simply and effectively, arrange themselves into expressive Hogarthian dioramas. All that muscular propulsiveness pays off gangbusters. Each of the characters brims over with life…a fantastic bit of theatre…Definitely worth the trip - preferably with a seat in the front row.’

★★★★ Pocket Size Theatre http://www.pocketsizetheatre.com/2018/01/review-east-at-kings-head-theatre.html ‘…the flow is enhanced by Yvan Karlsson, the movement director, to create evocative pictures with a minimum of props. …some of the best moments are when they work as an ensemble with energy and intensity. …The quality of this production and of the exceptional writing makes this a must see show…It is a a theatrical tour de force, a piece of theatre history and a wonderful engaging experience that only the best live theatre can deliver.’

★★★★ London Theatre https://www.londontheatre1.com/news/192632/review-steven-berkoffs-east-kings-head-theatre/ ‘Full of energy, this is an uncompromising and dynamic production.

★★★★ West End Wilma http://www.westendwilma.com/review-east-kings-head-theatre/ ‘knockabout physical action’, ‘great energy’

★★★★ Love London Love Culture https://lovelondonloveculture.com/2018/01/12/review-east-kings-head-theatre/ ‘extremely physical for all of the cast whether it is dancing or fighting or in one scene acting as motorbikes (which is particularly effective), that is very creative and engaging to watch.’

★★★★ Fairy Powered Productions http://fairypoweredproductions.com/east-review/ ‘a fast and furious time hopping parade of set pieces…the end of pier atmosphere, so effective in the silent movie skits, still pervades through the more violent scenes, giving the brutality on display a farcical, almost pitiful edge as nostalgic ideas and bare reality dance around each other. …This revival of East is brutally funny and sharp, full of high-energy performances, and still packing a powerful punch today. Well worth a look.’

★★★★ The Upcoming https://www.theupcoming.co.uk/2018/01/12/east-at-the-kings-head-theatre-theatre-review/ 

★★★★ The Spy in the Stalls http://thespyinthestalls.com/2018/01/east/

 

★★★ Theatre Box https://theatrebox.blog/2018/01/12/east/ ‘energetic and vibrant, youthful and clever. The action is physical and slick, while also being layered and engaging.’

 

UNRATED REVIEWS:

London Grip http://londongrip.co.uk/2018/01/east-by-steven-berkoff-kings-head-theatre-review-by-julia-pascal/ ‘[a] brilliant production…Yvan Karlsson’s movement direction is breath-taking. ’ 

 

The View from the Cheap Seat https://viewfromthecheapseat.com/2018/01/14/east-kings-head-theatre/ ‘East is not for the faint hearted. It is poetic, intelligent, brutal and funny.’

 

Morning Star Online https://morningstaronline.co.uk/article/sure-footed-sex-and-violence ‘a staging which makes the very best of Berkoff’s work.’

 

My Theatre Mates http://mytheatremates.com/east-kings-head-theatre-thom/ ‘It is hard to imagine a better fringe staging.’

 

A Younger Theatre https://www.ayoungertheatre.com/review-east-kings-head-theatre/ ‘raucous, energetic and enthralling…There are beautifully choreographed moments of physical theatre, such as the animated trips to the theme park, and other moments that can best be described as impeccable chaos…’ 

 

The Blog of Theatre Things https://theblogoftheatrethings.com/2018/01/13/review-east-at-kings-head-theatre/ ‘The cast excel in physically and emotionally demanding roles, and the production maintains a constant drive and energy from the first moment to the last…It may not be everyone’s cup of tea; if you’re easily offended then you may want to steer clear. But for anyone who’s excited by bold, striking theatre that’s not afraid to go its own way, this is a must-see.’

 

British Theatre Guide http://www.britishtheatreguide.info/reviews/east-king-s-head-the-15427 ‘James Craze and Jack Condon, as Mike and Les, turn themselves into a Harley Davidson motorbike in a sequence that will stick in the memory. It is a fantastic piece of physical theatre as they alternate as machine and rider. …The highly charged physical element of this production gives it enormous vitality, an energy that makes it a joyful celebration, no matter how black the situation. When it erupts into song, it’s in tune in all ways; like the well-contrived text, the mixture of methods seems natural, the humour irrepressible. This is like crossing Auden and Isherwood with Edward Bond, an Eastenders staged by Frantic Assembly. No it’s not. It’s Berkoff with a fine cast and an understanding director and you should see it.’

 

Once A Week Theatre http://www.onceaweektheatre.com/east-at-the-kings-head-theatre/ ‘startlingly contemporary…With meta touches and strong physical performances, including plenty of mime, there’s lots to excite anyone with a keen interest in the stage. ‘

 

Exeunt http://exeuntmagazine.com/reviews/review-east-kings-head-theatre/ 'Sharp movement parallels and complements the language. ...Energetic and exuberant, this revival effectively reinvigorates the myth, making it a new yet familiar encounter.'