Nick Curtis

Nick Curtis is a critic with The London Evening Standard. This account has been auto-generated, and does not indicate that this person is an active member of Show-Score.com. That said, if you "follow" this member, you will automatically be updated whenever s/he writes a new review.

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Reviews (156)
The London Evening Standard

The staging is pleasingly simple ... [but] Ed Curtis’s script is awful. Ultimately ... this show depends on the quality of the music ... [when] Knight transitions into full-throated song, time seems to stop. Her four male co-stars deliver immaculate performances. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

The play is an enjoyably slippery, enthralling piece of work, albeit with a tiresome metatheatrical framework. It’s overdone ... but it’s also gripping throughout. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

It features one absolute belter of a song, and a ton of bad-taste gags. [It's] the sort of thing you’d expect from a precocious student drama group. [Harry] Hill gifts the production his trademark air of precarious hilarity, and some dreadful jokes. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

I can see Herrin’s production working in a small, studio setting, where the younger actors would shine. But as a West End star vehicle, it barely passes its MOT. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

The production does have occasional longueurs ... But Walsh and Walmsley are magnetic throughout and Carr’s words are a delight to hear, even at their most bleak. Bracingly good. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

The show is a mess and a bore but it has also lodged in my brain like a nagging earworm. Much of the acting is of a very high standard. This is one for those whose idea of a stimulating night out is to be aggressively and repeatedly challenged. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Amara Okereke absolutely smashes it in Bartlett Sher’s joyful staging. Sher manages [to showcase a fresh production of the show] and has surely also turned Okerere from a promising actress into a bona fide star. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Grim is the word. This version of the beloved 50s-set high school musical has a hard carapace of professionalism but underneath it’s colourless, charmless, and emptily energetic. Full Review

Oklahoma! (London)
Southwark
The London Evening Standard

The score is rigorously interrogated by orchestrator Daniel Kluger and sounds utterly fresh. It’s a stunning reinvention by directors Daniel Fish and Jordan Fein, although their radicalism very occasionally feels laboured. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Bailey’s joyful production of Shakespeare’s play glows with the warmth of the Italian sun. This is a smart, stylish, grown-up staging, and the most purely pleasurable evening I’ve had at the Globe in yonks. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

But Comer is the reason we’re here. Her commitment made the production happen and kept it alive through delays. We all wanted to know if she’s as good live on stage as she is on screen. And the answer is no: she’s better. Full Review

Scandaltown (London)
Hammersmith
The London Evening Standard

One comes away with the sense of having watched and enjoyed a diverting confection, a stylish exercise in pastiche with a gloss of contemporary debate, but ultimately superficial. Full Review

The 47th (London)
Southwark
The London Evening Standard

You can’t fault the ambition or the sheer craft of Mike Bartlett’s blank-verse drama about a Trump rerun against Kamala Harris in 2024. But despite an astonishing, hideously transformative central performance from Bertie Carvel as the tangerine narcissist, the show lands disappointingly. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Director Danya Taymor takes us on a gleeful killing spree of sacred cows and sensitivities, until the end when Harris veers into indulgence...Nonetheless this is a thrilling, jolting experience, boldly conceived and staged, adorned by fine performances. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

It’s hard to fault [Roxana] Silbert’s direction or the cast’s performances as they negotiate the confected philosophical debates and engineered flashpoints of Zegerman’s script. There’s much to enjoy here, as long as you don’t mind being taken for a ride. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

All rise for a magnificent Mockingbird. Sheer emotion and moral force make this Broadway adaptation of Harper Lee’s novel about race, community and family a powerfully uplifting theatrical event. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

A barnstorming, scenery-chewing Ralph Fiennes anchors David Hare’s new play about Robert Moses, who created parks for New York’s poor in the 1920s and by 1955 was ready to sacrifice Manhattan to the car...Nicolas Hytner’s production is by turns energetically brash and terribly baggy. Full Review

Cock (London)
West End
The London Evening Standard

Similarly, Marianne Elliott’s meticulous, eloquently stylised revival features a cast whose star appeal is matched by their impressive stage credentials. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

At any time, this production would look ill-considered and overblown, despite Harington’s impressive performance. Right now, it’s too much. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

I feel like I’m kicking a small, cute animal here, as this show is undeniably fun and admirable. It’s the first full production to emerge from the Turbine Theatre’s Musical Theatre Festival: I just don’t think it’s totally ready yet. Full Review

Running with Lions
Hammersmith
The London Evening Standard

It’s not perfect: the plotting is schematic at the beginning and end, and in the flagged-up crisis that ends the first half. Some of the dialogue lacks finesse. But no wonder Talawa Theatre’s Michael Buffong chose to nurture and direct it, or that Lyric boss Rachel O’Riordan put it on her theatre’s main stage. Structural flaws aside, this is an extraordinarily assured debut. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

If anything, this breathtakingly thrilling production by Jamie Lloyd - and the tour-de-force central performance by James McAvoy as the eponymous, big-nosed soldier-poet - have only become deeper and richer since the 2019 premiere. Maybe the last two years have made its themes of separation and loss more profound. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

This furious, poetic riposte to ‘misogynoir’ – the place where racism and sexism intersect for black women – is short, simple and powerful. Four young female performers, dressed in black on a bare stage, speak, sing and act out the countless aggressions to which they are subject, for a succinct 45 minutes. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

It’s an impressive debut work and a bracing, magnetic performance. But much of the ground it covers fits the “messy woman” trope. Alice Fitzgerald’s production is packed with hectic sound and lighting cues, and wit. Full Review

The Glow
Sloane Square
The London Evening Standard

McDowall set out to write a myth that tracks human history, then to transcend it. Naturally he falls short. But to watch him try is exhilarating. Go. Get your mind blown and your hackles raised. Full Review

East Is East
Waterloo
The London Evening Standard

Khan’s production stretches the action across the wide Lyttelton stage but hits every comic and dramatic mark sharply...I still find the overall effect of East is East discomfiting. Again, perhaps that’s the point. Full Review

Jitney (London)
Southwark
The London Evening Standard

The performances here are superb. This is a stunning, richly textured piece of work, both particular and universal. Craig’s production fills in another piece of the pie. Let’s have more, please. Full Review

Britannicus (London)
Hammersmith
The London Evening Standard

The knot of political, filial and incestuous sexual tension in the story is so tight and specific that the idea of contemporary relevance is laughable ... all the way through I kept thinking – why here, why now, why make this more difficult than it already is? Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Though it has flashes of brilliance, Amy Hodge’s splashy, revisionist, female-focused staging makes Shakespeare’s troublesome late history play even more of a mess. There’s enough going on here to please nerds and Shakespeare completists, but I can’t honestly recommend it to anyone else. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Bowman holds her own against scene-stealing turns from big-voiced Nadine Higgin as Elle’s beautician ally Paulette and the lithe Lauren Drew as her fitness guru client Brooke. If you love the film, or if you simply go with an open mind and heart, you’ll have a whale of a time. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

The play is heavy on exposition but oddly short on dramatic substance. At the end, I felt I’d had a lot of history explained to me, rather than being immersed in it. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Beth Steel’s much-anticipated, much-delayed play is a confused mix of family saga, melodrama and political screed. Blanche McIntyre’s baggy production features lots of people explaining ... politics, ... to each other, but can’t unscramble the script. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

The plotting and characterisation are heavy handed and Hannah Hauer-King’s production isn’t exactly subtle, but altogether it’s a charming, funny and inclusive piece of work. Qureshi ['s] ... play delves boldly into issues of transphobia and homophobia but it has a generous, open spirit. Full Review

Middle (London)
Waterloo
The London Evening Standard

It comes down to the performances. Maggie detonates a bomb under the marriage in the first five minutes ... Rushbrook eloquently unpacks what brought the character to that point. Ryan’s Gary is sometimes oafish ... but more often a quietly poignant figure. Together they excavate a marital pit of regret. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Does Jerusalem deserve this revival? Unquestionably, yes. You could watch this play, and Rylance’s performance, every night of the too-short run and still find new dimensions to wonder at. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

I slightly resent the way immersive theatre relies on FOMO ... [but] I was overawed by the rich, vivid, momentous achievement of Barratt, Doyle and their cast and cohorts here. Simply astonishing. Full Review

Zorro (London)
Charing Cross
The London Evening Standard

A young cast of actor-musician-flamenco dancers clatter enthusiastically through a tale that’s jokily slapdash one minute, breast-beatingly po-faced the next. They bring more polish to the show than it deserves. There are more Hispanic clichés than you can shake a castanet at. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Given the title there’s a surprising amount of joy in Ryan Calais Cameron’s play. It’s a mosaic of young British black men’s experience, often laugh-out-loud funny and physically exuberant, occasionally poetic, but with a recurring undertow of dread. Full Review

Anyone Can Whistle (London)
Elephant and Castle
The London Evening Standard

...there are equally good reasons why this show is rarely revived. Rankcom’s production will please bereaved Sondheim completists. Anyone more discerning should give it a body-swerve. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

A lush, wraparound, jazz-funk keyboard soundtrack provides the spine for this chamber musical, a jubilant celebration of black affection and identity tempered by white interference. It’s a likeable, often joyful but ultimately lopsided show, part family story and part polemic. Full Review

Clybourne Park (London)
Finsbury Park
The London Evening Standard

This exquisitely discomfiting riff on race and property by US writer Bruce Norris won the Evening Standard Best Play Award in 2010 and Oliver Kaderbhai’s punchy revival proves it’s become more, not less, relevant since then. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Not even Ruth Wilson’s limpid talent can breathe life into this dated, 70-minute solo show, in which a woman goes to pieces discussing the end of an affair with her unheard lover over the phone. Full Review

After The End
Stratford
The London Evening Standard

I can see why Turner thought it would be interesting to revive a play that looks at the effects of confinement and de-socialisation, and she does it well. I can also see why a lot of people wouldn’t want to see it right now. Full Review

Our Generation
Waterloo
The London Evening Standard

Overall this is a terrific piece of work. It’s fine-grained, deftly edited, unshowily framed by Evans and set designer Vicki Mortimer to focus on the performers and the real-life stories they are telling. Full Review

Red Pitch
Shepherds Bush
The London Evening Standard

As well as a coming-of-age story, this is an account of social displacement by gentrification...It’s still rare to see a play about young, black, working-class youths on our stages: rarer still to see one in which they are celebrated like this. Full Review

The Forest
Camden Town
The London Evening Standard

At just 80 minutes the play is taut, tight and stylish enough to command the attention. But I suspect that deep down, the psychological shenanigans that Zeller inserts into hackneyed thriller tropes really aren’t that profound. Full Review

The Chairs
Islington
The London Evening Standard

Kathryn Hunter’s performance is the main draw in this rare and laborious revival of Eugene Ionesco’s absurdist 1952 play...this knowing, apocalyptic slapstick raises titters rather than belly laughs. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Design, music, video and puppetry – notably dogs represented by skulls mounted on scythes – are seamlessly integrated. Rice’s production is an involving, full-throated pleasure to watch. Full Review

A Number (Old Vic)
Southwark
The London Evening Standard

Paapa Essiedu gives a tour de force performance. Lyndsey Turner’s production contains some harsh laughs and exerts a chilly and slowly closing grip, helped by Es Devlin’s boxed-in set. Full Review

The London Evening Standard

Will anyone other than over-60s and diehard Downton fans – a Venn diagram that’s almost a circle, surely – care for a lazy portrait of a woman who died 32 years ago, and whose heyday was in the 1950s? Full Review