SOPHIE CUNDALL reviews UCL Drama Society’s Romeo and Juliet. From the moment you walk in through the creaking doors of the 19th century gothic church in which UCL drama’s Romeo and Juliet is staged, you know it will be something special, and quite unlike any other version of this canonic play. As you settle into a wooden pew, you’re greeted with the soft sound of sobbing from a mascara-streaked face. The grief element of the play is immediately pronounced, particularly when you realise it’s actually Benvolio on stage, not Juliet or her Romeo. This also nicely introduces another refreshing element to the piece: the casting tosses gender aside, a delightful, and actually quite Shakespearean, twist on the tale that adds to the plethora of modern approaches that make it a fresh and current version.  The performance itself from the actors is incredibly captivating: the pace never drops, and they arguably…Continue Reading

Romeo and Juliet

OLIVIA DALEY reviews UCL Drama Society’s Saint Joan at Bloomsbury Theatre. George Bernard Shaw’s Saint Joan tells the notorious story of Joan of Arc’s triumph and subsequent persecution in the 15th century, and UCL Drama Society’s own adaptation was a radically original slant on the often-produced play. Detaching it from its specific historical context and universalising the subject-matter by adding modern touches and not giving specific focus to the time period, the production allowed reflection for the significance of the heroine’s story in its day while simultaneously demonstrating its relevance to our contemporary era. The production team made several effective choices to achieve this: most notably, the casting of women as male characters in positions of power leaves an impression, making more potent the thread that runs throughout Shaw’s play of the blurred nature between good and evil, innocence and culpability. It is not man against woman or England against France, instead,…Continue Reading

Saint Joan