The Tower Archive

Reaction to our shows
The Tower Archive

Reaction to our shows

Here's a selection of comments we received on our productions during 2023 ...

A Doll's House A Doll's House

A special mention must be given to Vaishnavi CG with respect to her outstanding portrayal of the protagonist Niru. Onstage for almost every scene, her delivery was faultless, and she managed to cultivate a believable and endearing main character with whom the audience cannot help but side. Her performance was complemented by a very talented group of actors - Arthur Davies’ well-crafted representation of Dr Rank provided much-needed laughter from the audience at times, while Janak Nirmal’s complex enactment of Das left the audience empathising with the sentiments he was grappling with, regardless of his villainous persona.
A combination of skilled direction, sensory immersion and well-cast, gifted actors led to a captivating, nuanced and culturally rich reimagination of A Doll’s House.

(Lucy Dyer for London Theatre Reviews)

“It said some important truths about gender and colonialism. I was blown away by the performances that made it so engaging too” “The director’s creative vision was executed by the actors with sophistication in every scene, whether through their meticulous attention to detail or their ability to paint a vivid picture for our broader comprehension” “This production is a delight from the moment Niru steps apparently carefree onto the stage to its bittersweet end. Thought provoking and beautifully executed. Bravo!” ” …the staging, costuming and sound really heighten the drama and create an immersive world” “Niru’s performance from a timid devoted wife to someone willing to speak up for herself is outstanding”
(Various audience members)

Old Bridge Old Bridge at the Edinburgh Fringe

Epic in scale - as much is packed into one hour as in many a full-length play, yet it doesn't feel rushed.
(Audience member J.G.)

Old Bridge is one of the best plays I've seen at the Fringe. The performances were grounded, nuanced and layered, and all the performers had incredible chemistry together. The story was expertly structured and paced as well - while many other shows I've seen at the festival slow down and somewhat lose the audience towards the two thirds mark, Old Bridge's story just kept on escalating towards a very gripping climax. The sound design here is a clear highlight too- it really created this feeling that there was an actual war unfurling backstage. Moreover, the soundtrack was impeccably utilized - it not only set the story at a specific period in time but also helped illustrate how the characters use popular music to drown out the chaos of the outside world.
(Audience member E.A.)

Beautifully handled story of love between friends at a time of war and what war does to people. Set in a different conflict, it's a timely reminder to us of the wars in Syria and Ukraine. I laughed at the chat and jokes of the friends, but had to rub away tears as I left. Powerful, very well acted and much more than the sum of its parts.
(Audience member L.N.)

A truly moving and thought-provoking play by a talented cast of five.
( Awarded 4 stars.)

Labour of Love Labour of Love

Helen McGill's is a remarkable performance. She develops her character from a troubled young mother, whose husband has had to resign as MP because he’s dying of cancer, through several decades to a mature woman who knows the business she’s in and the man she’s working for very well indeed. And she does it in reverse. We get the mature version first and then with the aid of a wig, some younger clothes and some fine acting she sheds 30 years and carries us with her completely.
It’s beautifully written and in this production exceptionally well acted and intelligently directed.

(Susan Elkin for Sardines magazine. Awarded 4 stars.)

The creative team have thought deeply about the different levels of meaning in the play and the innovative ways that it is represented through the visual aspects of the production, becoming one of its most successful features ... Hughes manages the comedy pacing well, the speed of the dialogue which at times is ferocious and the moments of physical humour that are never too broad in this play but produce plenty of laughs ... Jean feels like the centre of the drama and Helen McGill grasps the opportunity to put her mark on this lively and brilliant creation who more than holds her own with the numerous argumentative men that surround her ... McGill entirely captures Jean’s sharp mind and ready wit as well as her unfussy professionalism all delivered with ease, but there are softer undertones, a sensitivity to both the front line role her character plays in liaison with the public and their troubles, all while dealing with her own private difficulties.
(Maryam Philpott for Cultural Capital blog.)

Absolutely brilliant writing and even better acting. Helen McGill outstanding.
(Audience member K. O'S.)

In Hiding In Hiding

What a beautiful little theatre. Saw In Hiding play ... thought provoking and brilliant story line. Actors were first rate too.
(Google review from Mary Ramsay. 5 stars.)

Under Milk Wood Under Milk Wood

An amazing production. I’ve always loved Under Milk Wood and this didn’t disappoint ... I loved the set and the actors were phenomenal! Do go and support this amazing local theatre.
(Audience member M.R.)

I didn't know what to expect as I was familiar with the BBC versions from 50s and 70s - and was curious to see how it translated to the stage. I didn't expect it to be so staggeringly good.
(Audience member)

Old Bridge Richard III

This show is great fun- make sure you catch it! Pacey, provocative and a visual treat ...
(Audience member S.H.)

Absolutely loved this production. Really good reimagining of the play. Excellent
(Audience member A.L.)

Consent Consent

This pleasing production, niftily directed with a fine finale tableau, features seven competent actors who play off, and respond to each other pretty effectively. Liam Brown, in particular, is convincingly naturalistic as a lawyer conducting a difficult interview with a client ... Also excellent is Ruth Kelly, initially the exhausted mother of a new born, then as an anxious friend, later as a furious wronged wife and ultimately a in a (sort of) resigned resolution. Her range is striking.
It’s an enjoyable account of a challenging play.

(Susan Elkin for Sardines magazine.)

Pal Joey Pal Joey

... this production with its clever staging and warm delivery seizes every opportunity it can to revisit a minor classic which was a turning point for the modern American musical.
(John Chapman for 2nd from Bottom blog.)

hang hang

The cast of Sara Odeen-Isbister, Henry Sharples and Valerie Paul-Kerry were exceptional and put over the material in a beautifully measured and powerful manner ... Every move, every gesture, every thought process was faultlessly delivered ... The stark clean lines of Phillip Ley’s set enhanced the notion of a bleakly joyless process and seating the audience on three sides and having a central revolve made us into involved yet detached onlookers. Indeed I’d go so far as to say the auditorium set up with its soulless entry corridor and the semi-immersive feel of the production was a masterstroke which totally enhanced the experience. Engineered thrillingly by Ruth Sullivan who also provided a unsettling soundscape, this production is one that is still resonating as I write my reactions.
(John Chapman for 2nd from Bottom blog.)

See it if you can, it's fantastic. You'd be a fool to miss it.
(Audience member D.R.)

Terrific production ... Excellent performances from all, great direction and a fantastic set. Thought provoking, compelling and funny - don’t miss it.
(Audience member C.G.)

... all three actors were outstanding in this 70 minute play.
(Audience member S.E.M.)

Old Bridge Old Bridge

"We really enjoyed this play. Full credit to to the wonderful actors, production team and staff at the Tower Theatre." ... "Breath taking. Well written, superbly produced and beautifully performed by a brilliant intimate fautless cast. Not forgetting the important people that make it all possible - lighting, sound, set design and of course the fabulous front of house welcoming warriors!" ... "I found it very engaging and it me me reflect on the madness of war. I brought home what everyday Ukrainians are currently going through. Young cast, well acted and an interesting venue. It was my first time there but I will be back. Thanks."
(Various audience members)

[The play is] now lovingly and very competently staged (well done, director Amanda Waggott) ... All the cast is strong and the central four work very pleasingly together. The stand out performance is Emily Carmichael as Leila. She presents a character who is vivacious, restless, funny and eventually so frightened she can barely speak. It’s excellent work ... sound designer Harry Tomlin has done a convincing job especially with the menacing rumbles. I also admired Andy Peregrine's lighting.
(Susan Elkin for Sardines magazine. Awarded 4 stars.)

Our Country's Good Our Country's Good

Peta Barker's imaginative direction places all the cast on stage ... thus they are, in every sense, a company of actors able to chorus the chapter/scene headings effectively.
(Georgina)Koronka is especially good as the governor, using gently heightened RP and presenting plenty of authority and then, in complete contrast, as Wisehammer the intelligent, sensitive Jewish convict who wants to write plays.

(Susan Elkin for Sardines magazine. Awarded 4 stars.)

There’s a great sense of engagement from all members of the cast with most of them doubling and trebling various characters. With over twenty named roles this provides economy but also enhances the theatricality of the production ... the cast do “act well” and transition effectively between characters. Notable standouts are Rebecca Allan as the ultimately tragic Midshipman Harry Brewer and determinedly unaccommodating Dabby Bryant, Heather Dalton who is particularly impressive as a fiery Liz Morden and Georgia Koronka’s very well delineated Governor Phillips and budding playwright Wisehammer. Holding both the play and the play within the play together is Jonathan Wober’s central turn as the nascent idealistic director ... Wober’s subtle performance as Clark shows the development of a social conscience and his belief in the power of a community endeavour to instil harmony and co-operation.
(John Chapman for 2nd from Bottom blog.)

'Play' and 'All That Fall' Play and All That Fall

Last night saw Samuel Beckett's double-bill, All That Fall and Play, at the Tower Theatre (Stoke Newington). I was blown away by the performances. A great showcase of talent from this community. Wholly recommend.

(Audience Member J.A.L.)

I thought the sound for All that Fall last night was absolutely brilliant - totally brought the play to life…
(Audience Member J.C.)

Play was extraordinary, what a treat to see such a technically challenging piece performed so brilliantly by the three actors. And All That Fall took us on a journey to rural Ireland, with voices and sounds setting the story and the scene perfectly.
(Audience Member R.S.)