When Winston Went to War with the Wireless
Closed 2h 30m
When Winston Went to War with the Wireless

When Winston Went to War with the Wireless London Reviews and Tickets

(10 Ratings)
Members say
Intelligent, Clever, Relevant, Slow, Disappointing

About the Show

Jack Thorne's new play about the 1926 General Strike.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (10)

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91 Reviews | 5 Followers
Intelligent, Informative, Relevant, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if You like politics and historical pieces. You enjoy great acting. You find Churchill an intriguing figure.

Don't see it if You don't care for politics and history. Read more

91 Reviews | 6 Followers
Overrated, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Intelligent, Great staging

See it if You’re interested in historical plays, the origins of the BBC, and how the press is manipulated for political ends.

Don't see it if You’re not interested in lesser-known moments in history with perhaps less significance. Read more

99 Reviews | 8 Followers
Great writing, Great acting, Clever

See it if Fascinating story of the BBC and the general strike.

Don't see it if Have no idea who Lord Reith was.

61 Reviews | 1 Follower
Clever, Funny, Great staging, Thought-provoking, Resonant

See it if You interested in issues of politics and broadcasting. You know a bit of twentieth century English history.

Don't see it if You are tired of seeing Churchill portrayed on stage. Read more

161 Reviews | 28 Followers
Slow, Intelligent, Great acting

See it if you want to see a brilliantly acted play about the early history of the BBC and their relationship with the government.

Don't see it if you want a deep dive in to history, this is sadly quite banal- it doesn't allow itself to explore or create, rather than retell. Read more

120 Reviews | 12 Followers
Slow, Quirky, Intelligent, Disappointing

See it if you're interested in the history of BBC or the man who started it.

Don't see it if you are expecting a play about Churchill. Read more

194 Reviews | 136 Followers
Disappointing, Relevant

See it if you’re deeply interested in the BBC and its role in the General Strike of 1926. Haydn Gwynne is a hoot as Stanley Baldwin.

Don't see it if you would prefer to see that history dramatized, rather than watch good actors act out the Wikipedia page on that history.

25 Reviews | 0 Followers
Resonant, Intelligent, Great writing, Absorbing, Clever

See it if It's a very interesting play, and really well done. Some great acting, Hayden Gwynne is great as Stanley Baldwin. Definitely worth seeing.

Don't see it if Not sure if The Donmar is the best place for this, it's not an intimate play, his other play is at The National which would work better IMO

Critic Reviews (10)

The Guardian (UK)
June 14th, 2023

“If Reithian principles represent the ideal of truth-telling and impartiality in public service broadcasting today, Jack Thorne’s play looks back at the man who established them at a delicate moment in the history of the BBC, and dramatises his inner tussle with truth.”
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The Times (UK)
June 14th, 2023

“If Thorne’s script has a flaw, it’s that most of the characters remain cheerfully two-dimensional.”
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June 15th, 2023

“...Thorne triumphantly uses real history to create a compelling drama that is both amusing, touching and revealing.”
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London Theatre
June 14th, 2023

“Katy Rudd’s beautifully crafted production utilises radio-style foley effects throughout...Overall, however, there is too much informing for a drama (and actually, with so much narration and audio work, it might be better suited to radio). But it’s still a potent love letter to the BBC, in all its messy glory.”
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The Stage (UK)
June 14th, 2023

“Unfortunately, Thorne also saddles Archer with some clumsy narrating duties...All his characters here, in fact, are broad and flat, and although there are flashes of strobe-lit police violence and confrontation with strikers, the texture of interwar life is not pungent enough. Still, it is a piece full of interest; the sort of play, in fact, that would sound at home on Radio 4.”
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Theatre Weekly (UK)
June 13th, 2023

When Winston Went to War With The Wireless is a fascinating glimpse at two men who have shaped the history of this country, regardless of how accurate all the elements of it are, the early pioneers of the BBC would be proud to know that this is a play that mirrors the Royal Charter as it succeeds in informing, educating and entertaining.
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The Arts Desk
July 5th, 2023

“The strength of the play, and perhaps its most depressing side, is that it shows how some things never change in this country.”
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All That Dazzles (UK)
June 15th, 2023

“On reflection, it’s not really about Winston Churchill at all. It’s primarily a piece about right, wrong, and the decisions made by one man which secured the future of our national broadcasting corporation. While it doesn’t throw any punches, it’s both thought provoking and educational – with a humorous script and compelling performances.”
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