Closed 1h 40m

Retrograde London Reviews and Tickets

(9 Ratings)
Members say
Absorbing, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Clever, Ambitious

About the Show

Ryan Calais Cameron’s new play examining Hollywood in the 1950s and Sidney Poitier's journey to stardom.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (9)

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57 Reviews | 3 Followers
Intelligent, Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Resonant, Clever

See it if you like pacey, funny and compelling writing from Ryan Calais Cameron. You love historical, character driven plays or Sidney Poitier!

Don't see it if you think Hollywood is fine as it is, or find challenging resonant themes raised (injustice, racism, discrimination) painful

54 Reviews | 2 Followers
Resonant, Excruciating, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Absorbing

See it if you want to learn about Sidney Poitier and the McCarthyiste era and experience this in a theatre where the audience is immersed in drama

Don't see it if you are too sensitive to stand dialogue exchanges that are at times brutal, at times passive-aggressive and rife with microaggressions Read more

139 Reviews | 4 Followers
Compelling, Powerful, Intense, Hollywood, 1950s american history

See it if Dramatic zeal intensifies to a fever pitch with towering performances!

Don't see it if No reason not to see this, everyone should see it!

58 Reviews | 5 Followers
Resonant, Thought-provoking, Profound, Clever

See it if you want to know more about Sidney's life and support an amazing writer in Ryan.

Don't see it if you want something past paced!

38 Reviews | 0 Followers
Burning with fire and fierce integrity., Ambitious, Clever, Absorbing

See it if Taut and meaningful dialogue. Wonderful premise. Brimming with passion, integrity and the flip sides of human nature. Superb acting.

Don't see it if You don't want to visit a Fringe will miss a gem if you don't!

1 Review | 0 Followers

See it if Interesting script and good acting

Don't see it if Set was spoiled by poster of Sean Scully painting which was certainly not in existence in 1956, when the events in the play took place.

99 Reviews | 8 Followers
During previews
Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Terrific acting of a moment in Poitier’s career. The writing of Paris a bit over done but still very watchable and powerful.

Don't see it if No interest in race or America in time of McCarthy

184 Reviews | 30 Followers
During previews
Resonant, Thought-provoking, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you wanna know the real story behind show business

Don't see it if your into a happy ending

Critic Reviews (10)

The London Evening Standard
April 27th, 2023

“Kudos to director Amit Sharma for capturing the pace and pulse of the writing. And to Jeremiah, who is physically unlike Poitier, but captures the essence of his rangy grace, clipped diction and fiery stare.”
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Time Out London
April 27th, 2023

“ ‘Retrograde’ may well end up being a stonking hit. I don’t think it will be regarded as Cameron’s masterpiece. But it effortlessly seals his reputation as a major talent.”
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The Guardian (UK)
April 27th, 2023

“Ryan Calais Cameron’s writing is sabre-sharp, every demotic and period inflection perfected, every threat hewn and glimmering with intelligence. “
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The Telegraph (UK)
April 27th, 2023

“Bringing to life an under-explored episode in the early career of Sidney Poitier, Ryan Calais Cameron’s ‘Retrograde’ is the finest new play about a pivotal, still pertinent, moment in civil rights history”
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The Times (UK)
April 27th, 2023

“Ivanno Jeremiah gives us a rangy, self-confident Poitier with a ready smile and the colourful dress sense of a jazz musician...Amit Sharma’s direction isn’t always subtle — there’s an overtone of melodrama at times.”
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London Theatre
April 27th, 2023

“ ‘Retrograde’ dramatises a fascinating, little-known piece of history concerning the trailblazing African-American actor Sidney Poitier...[the piece] encapsulates Cameron’s provocative ideas around the intersection of politics, culture, and race, in a blistering piece that finds plenty of contemporary parallels in a potent historical tale.”
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The Stage (UK)
April 27th, 2023

“Ivanno Jeremiah gives a magnetic central performance as Poitier, depicting a figure of perfect self-possession and easy-going intellectual confidence that almost completely masks his inner righteous anger.”
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April 28th, 2023

“...the play leaves you in no doubt that the young Poitier was, at this moment in time, already well on his way to being a Titan amongst artists and humanity, and a role model for Black people, and if Calais Cameron's play has one overarching achievement, it is this.”
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