Sarah Crompton

Sarah Crompton is a critic with The Telegraph (UK). 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 (145)
What's On Stage (UK)

"It is dramatic, but feels like the setting for a different play, not an intimate series of conversations where tensions across generations are exposed. The writing is warm and funny; the set is alienating." Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

I enjoyed the spirit of the show. Director Amy Hodge keeps things moving along briskly and with some sophistication. This musical doesn't quite change the world, but it offers a great time en route. Full Review

Jitney (London)
Southwark
What's On Stage (UK)

Every performance is outstanding in Tinuke Craig's sensitive and lively production right down to the smaller characters. Every detail of stage and scene ... is lovingly right. It's a fine production of a fascinating play. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

Moss ... has done something quite remarkable. While upping the fun and the fizz, she has also made it an inclusive power-house of a musical. She also hauls it into 2022. Ellen Kane's choreography is truly fabulous. On its own terms, the whole thing succeeds with magnificent, all-embracing confidence. I had the best of times. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

At the heart of it all is Duff, incandescently powerful. It is a truly great performance in an unruly yet riveting play that reveals Steel as an outstanding talent. Full Review

Middle (London)
Waterloo
What's On Stage (UK)

The writing is at times wonderfully acute and funny ... But this recognisable honesty in the writing is undermined by odd notes of contrivance ... [it's] true to life, but not necessarily riveting drama. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

With Comer as its protagonist, blazing away, it is impossible to avert your gaze. She brings its arguments to forceful life and in the process creates an unforgettable moment of theatre. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

[It] is magnificently staged. Co-director Maxine Doyle's choreography is, throughout, utterly transporting. It was beautiful and memorable, but I longed for more to help me make sense of it. Full Review

Scandaltown (London)
Hammersmith
What's On Stage (UK)

However, there is a lot of pleasure to be had en route in Rachel O'Riordan's lively production, cleverly choreographed by Malik Nashad Sharpe. Simon Slater's music and Kinnetia Isidore's costumes mix the contemporary and the 17th century to striking effect. I smiled throughout; it's a sign of how high a bar Bartlett has set himself that I emerged vaguely disappointed. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

The result, in Bartlett Sher's smooth, beautifully modulated production which arrives in London with Rafe Spall as Atticus, is an engaging and intelligently acted affair... Full Review

Cock (London)
West End
What's On Stage (UK)

It's a play that's easier to admire than to love, but nonetheless a challenging, fascinating contest to witness. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

The achievement of Helen Edmundson's adaptation and Rufus Norris's sensitive, fluent direction is that of all great art: it makes its points through its characters rather than by imposing arguments on top of them. Full Review

The Woods
Elephant and Castle
What's On Stage (UK)

But it's hard not to feel that all their care and attention would have been better lavished on a more insightful play that had rather more to say about the relationships between men and women than this stale and dated chamber piece. Full Review

The Forest
Camden Town
What's On Stage (UK)

It's all clever and quite intriguing, but it's not that deep. The idea that an affair is the ultimate betrayal both of others and self is hardly revelatory, even if the way the notion is worked out here is unusual. Full Review

The Chairs
Islington
What's On Stage (UK)

"It's a very odd script," says Kathryn Hunter's Old Woman, voice full of wonder. It is indeed – but very funny and thought-provoking too...Within this frame, [Marcello] Magni and Hunter weave pure magic. Full Review

A Number (Old Vic)
Southwark
What's On Stage (UK)

This production ... feel[s] so emotionally pressing that it is almost suffocating to watch. It's Churchill's genius that she can combine the comic and the tragic in a single scene; this production serves her vision superlatively. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

With its starry cast and a director who has made her name rethinking classic plays, this Cabaret always promised to be the show of the season. It is that. It's also a show for our times. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

If you want theatrical magic, Life of Pi is the show for you. This stage adaptation of Yann Martel's Booker Prize-winning novel is an absolute feast of imaginative effects, bringing to life the apparently unstageable, with flair and jaw-dropping beauty. Full Review

Manor
Waterloo
What's On Stage (UK)

After its brilliant set-up, it always feels as if it is straining towards its purpose, with its characters as symbols rather than as real, rooted human beings. It's all a bit schematic, but it contains some excellent performances. Full Review

'Night, Mother
Camden Town
What's On Stage (UK)

This basic lack of detail and texture in the writing, is compounded by the unreality of the production itself. The performances too hit one note and stay there for the course of 80-minutes. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

Polly Findlay's taut production speeds through its almost three hours with control and concentration. There's an awful lot to pack in and some of the plot developments...stretch credulity. But the propulsion of the ideas is strong and devastating. Full Review

The Guardian (UK)

Terry Davies provides a fabulously bluesy score, full of aching feeling. The narrative is fragmentary but the darkness is all-pervasive. Beautifully danced, it’s a triumph of Bourne’s genius for exact storytelling. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

The triumph of Cooke's production is the way it respects every beat of Kramer's political arguments and all his play's wit and style – it is often very funny – while never letting us forget that this here is above all a tragedy of men who lost men they loved, as friends and as partners. Full Review

Is God Is (Royal Court )
Sloane Square
What's On Stage (UK)

Themes bubble and disperse ... nothing is over-weighted but everything matters. Yet there's no sentiment in the writing, and the performances are also noticeably direct, creating characters who shine brightly. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

It's undoubtedly an evening that sends you back to your own future with a smile on your face, a perfect night out for nostalgics and car-loving kids of all ages. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

Director Moritz Von Stuelpnagel holds the wildly divergent tonal shifts together as best he can, and the cast are never less than watchable but the overall impact is strangely muffled. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

The plot doesn't make sense. I kept wondering what this play would have been like if it had been written by a woman ... As it is, everything seems equivocal. It's an interesting evening, but not a satisfying one. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

The songs ... are not in themselves memorable and their targets are horribly obvious. Director Peter Rowe keeps the whole thing moving fast enough. I suppose it's all good fun, but by the end I felt irritated by the show's sheer lack of sophistication. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

It's all cleverly paced, caring about detailed moments, quiet scenes, as well as the larger swell of events. It's a supremely assured cast, bringing to life a complicated story in a play that proves the value of history for understanding today. Full Review

Oklahoma! (London)
Southwark
What's On Stage (UK)

It is the most thorough rethinking of Rodgers and Hammerstein that you are ever likely to see, a sensational reassessment of a classic show that both asserts its greatness and casts it in an entirely fresh light. I think it is a masterpiece. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

[Rylance's] performance is such a wonder it's hard to describe. Every nuance is felt; his identification with the character so strong that he simply is. But the strength of the production is the way that the new group of youngsters who surround Rooster. It is quite simply just wondrous. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

It's that sense of voice, of education unlocking an ability to speak, that makes The Corn is Green such a powerful story. This production reveals that truth under the melodramatic gesturing. As Noel Coward said of cheap music, it is extraordinary how potent it is. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

What holds the piece together, apart from the sheer questing intelligence of the writing, is Latif's controlled direction and a performance of extraordinary range and power from Meikle. Both dignified and comic, doubting and assured, her kindly, thoughtful presence gives this bold, brilliant play its centre and its emotional heart. Full Review

The 47th (London)
Southwark
What's On Stage (UK)

The writing shimmers with power: it's an analysis of Putin and every autocratic ruler, as much as the present dangers in the United States...It's this central argument, presented with forensic care that makes The 47th pack such a knockout punch. And Carvel's Trump, darkly ferocious, gives it its villainous heart. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

It's stirring, engrossing stuff, smoothly directed by Nicholas Hytner, purring along at pace, and full of thought-provoking observations. Full Review

After The End
Stratford
What's On Stage (UK)

It's all terrifically done...Maybe it's the timing of the production that just makes it feel heart-pressingly pointless. It is a production I admired, but not a play I ever want to experience again. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

What Max Webster's modern-dress production proves is how many ways Henry V can be interpreted, revealing Shakespeare's uncanny understanding of the brutalising effects of any war. Full Review

The Collaboration
Southwark
What's On Stage (UK)

[Anthony] cleverly weaves his arguments about the nature of art, the origin of inspiration and the corruption of the art world into a story that hangs roughly on the lineaments of the two men's lives. Full Review

The Glow
Sloane Square
What's On Stage (UK)

If you surrender to it, it's utterly exhilarating and absorbing. But you might also write it off as utterly bonkers. It could all seem so fantastical that it becomes meaningless, but director Vicky Featherstone roots the play in a carefully sustained realism which the acting follows. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

Sarah Hanly has written and performs this heart-felt piece, clearly semi-autobiographical and full of insight into what it feels like growing up as a lesbian (or purple as she decides to call herself) in a convent school in County Wicklow and beyond. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

From the second you enter you know what to expect: a musical with a heart of gold that seeks to entertain and overwhelm in equal measure. It is so over the top, it's irresistible. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

If you wanted an image of the courage of British theatre in a really flippin' awful year, then it would be that. Performers trying their hardest to help audiences enjoy themselves. Battling through, against the odds. Never has panto seemed more precious. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

There's not much dramatic engagement in the story; all the characters who wander through remain outlines rather than people. [However], Adam J Bernard, Tarinn Callender, Matt Henry, and Tosh Wanogho-Maud play every part and fill every voice. They are credited as co-creators and in truth, they make the show. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

What an intriguing yet intractable play this is! It doesn't necessarily achieve all its aims, but watching it is a good deal more interesting than watching a lot of more formally successful dramas. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

It's impossible to fault the ambition or intent of 'Love and Other Acts of Violence', [but] there are simultaneously too many ideas ... and too few. Even if I have reservations about the play, I wouldn't have missed [it]. Full Review

Maryland
Sloane Square
What's On Stage (UK)

The culminative effect is as devastating as a punch to the solar plexus. We know all this stuff ... Yet to see the ills that underlie and allow them woven together into such a powerful drama is still shocking. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

Trust Caryl Churchill to pack more meaty matter into 20 minutes than most playwrights manage in two hours. Her surreal new short covers nothing less than bereavement, time and the universe – and does so with dizzying complexity. Full Review

curious
Soho
What's On Stage (UK)

Director Anna Himali-Howard provides a deliberately knowing production. The reach and ambition of its thinking means that the play has some structural difficulties ... But the intelligence and challenge of the writing ... is ... a breath of fresh air. Full Review

NW Trilogy
Kilburn
What's On Stage (UK)

The play struggles slightly to contain its many thoughts. Like all the plays, which were inspired by an oral history project, it takes life and makes it into a drama, shining a light on different stories which for all their specificity also reveal universal truths. Full Review

What's On Stage (UK)

This intricate structure is beautifully held together both by the poetry and quality of Pinnock's writing. The second half loses the tightness of the first. But this is balanced by the sheer richness of [the] narrative. Full Review