If you’re looking to see something quintessentially British, but with a modern twist this January why not head to the Old Vic for Sally Cookson’s Jane Eyre. This adaptation of the beloved Bronte favourite offers a playful new style of performance as the cast work around the sparse playground like set with a child-like, dancing, innocent energy. The adaptation is natural and slick, offering a believable and lively portrayal of Jane’s childhood and development into a passionate young lady. Felix Hayes as Rochester contributes a clever humour incredibly apt for his character, adding to the sense that Cookson has vibrantly captured the spirit of the novel with her characters. This play is made all the more splendid by its integral use of fantastical soundscapes, marvellous music and impressive lighting design, all the work of the talented Benji Bower, and all adding to the magic that is a excellent adaptation of a much loved classic.
If the classics aren’t for you and you’d rather something completely otherworldly, as well as child friendly, the Old Vic is also sporting David Greig’s fantastically bright, amusing adaptation of ‘The Lorax’ this January. The play is a brilliant choice for adults and children alike as although it carries an important moral message against greed and about protecting the planet, it does so in the most spectacular, energy filled, razzle- dazzle donned way possible, meaning that even the grouchiest scrooge would have a hard time not enjoying its surreal humour and acid bright explosions of rhyme and colour. Seuss’s famous rhyming script is pulled fantastically into the 21st century in this adaptation, and placed against a magnificent backdrop of lavish looming structures, peculiar puppet animals and huge, steampunky machines around which the optimistic Lorax battles against a lovable tragic hero, The Once-ler, to save the beautiful Truffula trees of his native land. The Lorax himself is a curious creature, a puppet operated by a team of three in a delightful way that resembles ‘The Lion King’s’ famous puppetry, if ‘The Lion King’ were designed in neon.
If sitting in a theatre is not your cup of tea, but you do enjoy a bit of grown up make believe London has a fantastic range of immersive theatre and treasure hunt style events on offer this January. One of the best looks to be Hidden London’s ‘Moriarty’s Game’, a one off cryptic puzzle adventure, where teams of up to four players are sent on a trail around London hoping to uncover the whereabouts of Sherlock Holmes’ famous nemesis, Moriarty. This trail is more than a little challenging, but offers its players a fantastic chance to see unusual aspects of the city as it takes you down empty mews lanes, through museum attractions and into classic Georgian pubs, using the intricacies of the city wonderfully as it guides you along.
When and Where?
• Jane Eyre
Tuesday 5th –Sunday 10th January
Tickets from £15 available online
The National Theatre
Nearest Tube – Waterloo
Website – www.nationaltheatre.org.uk
• The Lorax
Until Saturday 16th January
Tickets from £12 available online
The Old Vic
103 The Cut
Nearest Tube – Waterloo
Website – www.oldvictheatre.com
• Moriarty’s Game
Strictly over 18’s only
Until 31st March
£60 for a team of up to four people (tickets available online)
Royal Institute of British Architects
66 Portland Place
Nearest Tube – Regent’s Parks
Website – www.inthehiddencity.com/london/moriartys-game