HITLIST THE BEST THEATRE & DANCE
T T E K C O R C T T A M © O T O H P
✽ Wicked The adaptation of the story of the wicked witch of Oz has been a musical success around the world, and is rewarded with a long run in Scotland. See review at list.co.uk. King’s Theatre, Glasgow, until Sat 31 May.
✽ 51 Shades of Maggie A show that doesn’t seem to have stopped touring this
year returns to Glasgow, promising perhaps the naughtiest play of the year. Pavilion Theatre, Glasgow, Fri 16 & Sat 17 May.
✽ Newsboy The monthly performance
based on the issues of the moment joins the Mayfesto lineup for a shot of politically engaged and theme fresh theatre based on the theme of colonisation. Tron Theatre, Glasgow, Thu 22 May.
✽ Pests Tough tales from the underclass as two sisters try to cope with substance
abuse, incarceration and the usual sibling relationship problems. See preview, page 99. Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh, Thu 22–Sat 24 May.
✽ Nederlands Dans Theater 2
Contemporary dance that is both hip and accessible: a welcome return for the company who have a reputation for an expressive physicality. See preview, page 100. Edinburgh Festival Theatre, Thu 29 & Fri 30 May.
✽ Avenue Q Rude puppets take on the musical for a bawdy romp with a
disillusioned message that manages to retain some vague sense of hope. See preview, left. King’s Theatre, Edinburgh, Tue 10–Sat 14 Jun.
15 May–12 Jun 2014 THE LIST 99
AVENUE Q The ‘Muppets for mature audiences’ musical has reinvented the genre
T ony-winning megahit Avenue Q arrives in Edinburgh with a huge reputation on its shoulders, not just for the awards it has gathered but for the way book writer Jeff Whitty and composers Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx have ingeniously reinvigorated one genre by inverting it into another. Riffing upon the characters and tropes that many of us will recognise from having watched Sesame Street in our youths, this sharp puppet-based comedy musical imagines a similar cast all grown up and dealing with adult themes in a world of cynical realism.
‘It’s the use of puppets for an adult audience
that makes the show special,’ says Nigel Plaskitt, puppet coach on this production, whose previous credits include Doctor Who and Muppet Treasure Island. ‘They’re able to make statements about subjects like racism and sexuality that are harder if you’re an actor. I’ve seen it performed without puppets as a run-through and it really doesn’t work so well, because I think we all have associations with characters very similar to these that we take with us into the show.’ (David Pollock) King’s Theatre, Edinburgh, Tue 10–Sat 14 Jun.
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