The Castaways by Barak Marshall tells the story of a cast of twelve characters trapped in a strange, unexplained, seemingly underground limbo. How they have arrived here and how they are to escape are not clear. Their predicament is nonetheless enthralling.

The characters’ individual stories are played out for us in clever choreographed pastiches, and narrated by a cartoonish, mocking emcee: the jilted bride murdering her way though endless fiancés, the would-be lovers too timid to admit their feelings, the destructively passionate Latin couple and other such familiar tropes. The characters seem to have stepped straight off the pages of a particularly sinister children’s story book, although one under-lined by very adult themes of love, war, fear and bitterness. (more…)

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Rambert is one of Britain’s national dance companies – an ensemble of world-class dancers and live orchestra performing classic and contemporary works to give audiences an exhilarating theatrical experience.  They return to Oxford’s New Theatre this week with a programme which combines works old and new.  Back on the UK stage for the first time in thirteen years, the iconic Rooster by choreographer Christopher Bruce brings the rock’n’roll swagger of the Rolling Stones thrillingly to life in this evocation of the swinging sixties.  Transporting the audience to the coolest nightspot in town, sharp-suited, snake-hipped men and strong, sassy women perform virtuoso courtship dances to some of the Stones’ most famous tunes, including: Not Fade Away, Paint It Black, As Tears Go By, Sympathy for the Devil and, naturally, Little Red Rooster. (more…)