The Time Run London

SO I am all about a bit of time travel! I LOVE Doctor Who and totally dream of being his sassy side kick; solving puzzles, fighting aliens and historical dickheads whilst wearing impossibly fabulous nail polish and floral tea dresses. Yes. I am sure one day the elephant like noise of the impending Tardis will sound and I’ll be off to start my new life in the big blue box, but until that day comes it is nice to get in a little practice – which is where the Time Run comes in hand.

Time run london

You may be pleased to hear that there isn’t  any running involved in said Time Run, it is actually a Crystal Maze-esque romp through time and space in order to resolve a Nazi based theft that has lead to ALL KINDS of problems. In order to resolve the issue created by those whom I am sure we can all agree are the biggest historical dicks of them all, myself and a group of equally sassy co-adventurers had to solve some puzzles left in assorted areas of time and space. All with the very helpful assistance of a bot called Babbage.

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SO starting the Time Run means rocking up at a totally unassuming building in the stabbier regions of London. When you get there it kind of seems like you are an extra on the set of EastEnders, except for the fact there is a huge ominous door knocking about.  When your time begins, POOF the door is thrown open and a major fitty from some kind of era gone by quickly ushers you into what looks like a colonial map/ scheming room filled with all kinds of ye-olde looking objects. BOOM you are not in kansas/the estate round the back of London Fields train station any more! You are now in fact in a time portal in which all phones and gadgets and cumbersome objects must be surrendered to the fitty in a suit who will then proceed to prep you for your adventure.

fitty mc time run

I do not want to say too much about what actually happens when you begin your hour long adventure to retrieve an ancient sword from Nazi clutches as the real fun is experiencing it first hand. What I will say is that the worlds in which the creative team have created are EXCELLENT. No expense is spared in creating genuinely awesome and realistic sets and it truly feels like you are really in the locations they have designed, rather than a warehouse in London Fields.

My favourite type of theatre is that which is immersive/ promenade because it totally sparks my curiosity. Whilst I wouldn’t necessarily catagorise the Time Run as a performance, the experience certainly ignites ones inner adventurer.  My team mates and I found ourselves totally absorbed in the plot-line created and very invested in solving all the puzzles to reach our end goal.  By our involvement, we WERE the performance. I love that! On a side note, why doesn’t the Doctor have more than one side kick? (Sorry Rory Pond, you don’t count) He would get shit done MUCH quicker with our little squad.

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Unfortunately time was against us. We were SO CLOSE to finding the stolen artefact (NO, NO SPOILERS IT WILL RUIN IT!) but unfortunately we ran out of precious seconds. I don’t feel disappointed; to the contrary I felt a great sense of achievement when our time was up. SURE we didn’t manage to obtain the relic but I did get to time travel with some major huns (Sarah, Che and Sasha.) I may still need some practice before being appointed the Doctor’s side kick, but if he were to offer on the job training I would be totally down with that.

In my opinion the Time Run was fantastic. If you like a little adventure, have a reasonably high IQ and most importantly want to have some fun, I would suggest you assemble a team of 4-5 and GET TRAVELLING. Just watch out for Hitler.

Rating: 5/5  

The Time Run is in residence until 2nd August with the chance of  possible extension. Book tickets here.

Michael Morpurgo on War Horse

I am currently amid trying to script a play set in World War One. For this and many other reasons. Michael Morpurgo’s War Horse fascinates me on many levels. Whilst it is totally evocative of the era in which it is set, it is also a highly modern piece of theatre.

War Horse London

I have seen the show twice and am continually amazed at the way in which Marianne Elliott has bought Morpurgo’s text to life with the help of the Australian Handspring Puppets. Surely this must be beyond even what the author could have imagined when he heard his text was to be adapted for the stage 25 years after it was published?

Whilst Morpurgo is certainly the brains behind the story, he is just one of many people that have made the stage show a theatrical success. Therefore I was recently intrigued to read an interview with Morpurgo conducted for the War Horse website. The interview  is an excellent read on the authors thoughts on the show, which also helps me further understand how much he was involved in the final product.

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If you want to read the full article, click here. Below are some of the most interesting facts I have picked out about his relationship to the multi Oliver Award Winning show:

Facts about Michael Morpurgo and my response to his answers.

  • Morpurgo has actually appeared in the show on several occasions. For some reason the thought of the man that made it all possible being onstage in disguise as a farmer amuses me.
  • He used to ride an actual factual horse, although he said he was better at falling off!
  • He used three old war veterans in his village as his main source of research for the show. I find this quite heart warming; their memories will live on in one of the worlds most successful pieces of theatre.
  • His favourite moment in the book and show is the jarringly friendly encounter between a British and a German soldier. This scene is pretty cutting as the reader or audience see interaction between two humans in a desperate situation; the only thing that separates them from one another is their accent and the colour of their uniform. Directorially speaking, the most hard hitting scene in my opinion is when news of a battle is reported back in Devon whilst devastation from the battlefield continues to litter the stage.  For me Elliott’s decision to visually bring images of war to the British aisles, despite the fact it was being fought in France, was representative of the devastation it caused the back home. Yes, the blood may have been shed thousands of miles away, but the pain of the situation was just as real in Albert’s own front garden.

War Horse Michael Morpurgo

I was surprised that nobody asked Morpurgo about the film adaptation; I would have been interested to know how he feels his story was best portrayed. Did he also appear as an extra in set?

Video Review of War Horse

You know I am a theatre critic, right? Well here is a video review I recently uploaded in response to the show.

I am not sure I can pinpoint exactly how reading Morpurgo’s thoughts and watching the show are helping me with my own aspiration to write a  World War One drama (mine is actually a musical) but I know that they are somehow. If anything his finished masterpiece is an inspiration and absorbing myself in the aesthetic is food for though.

War Horse is running at the New London Theatre. It is one of the best pieces of drama out there at the moment and I thoroughly recommend you see it.