Review: City Stories – A Love Letter to London
“A sublime, charismatic and enchanting evening of cabaret drama”
As I’ve previously said I had seen City Stories a few times in their previous home at St. James Theatre. However in my opinion Wilton’s could not be a better new setting for this delightful cabaret drama. Wilton’s Music Hall is a gem in the heart of London and the oldest grand music hall in the world. It presents a year round programme of exceptional live music and world-class productions alongside learning and participation work that engages the local community and schools. The Grade 2 Star listed building recently completed a 4 year capital project with support from Heritage Lottery Fund and numerous trusts and individuals. This project, designed by Tim Ronalds Architects recently won the RIBA London Award 2016, RIBA London Conservation Award 2016 and RIBA London Building Of The Year 2016. It’s raw, rustic and historic charm evokes desires to open your heart and ears, to let the stories flood through every pore of your being.
An exquisite suite of short plays, City Stories: Tales of Love and Magic in London is a sequence of interwoven love stories written and directed by award-winning playwright James Phillips in an ode to our beloved capital. With original music composed and performed live by singer-songwriter Rosabella Gregory (winner of New York Songwriter’s Circle Song Contest),this innovative cabaret drama takes audiences on a magical journey through London and its dwellers…
City Stories returns to London fresh from a critically acclaimed hit run in New York. The City Stories Company includes:
Uriel Adiv, Daphne Alexander, Peter Bradley, Emily Bruni, Louisa Clein, Alan Cox, Sally Dexter, David Farley, Kirsten Farley, Matthew Flynn, Tom Gordon, Rosabella Gregory, Scott Handy, Alexander Hanson, David Howe, Patrick Kennedy, Gary Kemp, Chloe Mashiter, Penelope McGhie, Sarah Quintrell, Grace Smart, Phoebe Sparrow, Martin Turner, Yolanda Vazquez, Jay Villiers.
“The London that exists in the mind of James Phillips is a wondrous, languid place made of silky metaphor.. seductive and consistently well-acted production” New York Times
This particular run had four stories:
Occupy with Matthew Flyn and Daphne Alexander
Lullaby with Daphne Alexander, Sophie Angelson and Tom Gordon
Pearl with Matthew Flynn and Gillian Saker
The Greater Game with Daphne Alexander, Tom Gordon, Gillian Saker and Youssef Kerkour
Each story makes you think about the different dimensions of relationships, and ultimately the many aspects of love. All gloriously underpinned by the hauntingly, beautiful atmospheric music of Rosabella Gregory. I looked around the audience as each story played out and you could feel the concentration and the power of the words, washing over and wrapping them in warmth and romance.
It’s such a simple concept, a series of stories about love and our gorgeous London, acted by a cast whom are so captivating you absorb every line and word they utter. Written by the immensely talented playwright James Phillips with lighting created by David Howe which perfectly adds to the ambience.
Once again I enjoyed a sublime, charismatic and enchanting evening of cabaret drama. I would implore you to watch out for the next set of dates and get to know the city and its stories. Feel empowered to hope, live and celebrate love when City Stories returns next year.