Joe Crystal

Joe Crystal is a wannabe polymath who, much to the chagrin of several teachers, spent most of his youth making his classmates laugh, correcting their spelling and grammar and forging parents' signatures all of which served to protect him from being bullied. Despite this, following a lengthy prosperous career in the financial services sector, he turned to acting, singing and producing as a refuge from the perils of an ever-growing bank balance and is now comfortably among the poor huddled masses of the entertainment industry. He aims to provide crystal clear reviews of multiple theatrical genres without using, utilising, referring, turning or resorting to a thesaurus...
Dame for a laugh!: Jack Off the Beanstalk at Above The Stag Theatre

What's dirty and smells and makes you laugh out loud? Yes, it's the annual bawdy pantomime from Above The Stag at a brand spanking new Vauxhall venue.

Monday 9th December 2013 Read more...
A Swell Resurrection: Dick! Comes Again: Bigger, Longer, Harder! at the Leicester Square Theatre

One of the crudest adult pantomimes in town returns with songs, laughs and a massive dildo. Entertaining escapism for smut-lovers everywhere. At the Leicester Square Theatre.

Monday 2nd December 2013 Read more...
Do Not Disturb: The Door at the Park Theatre

If you're an insomniac, don't think about what's behind a door that you're not supposed to open – you'll never get to sleep! The Door provokes more questions than it answers though the journey isn't by any means uninteresting. At the Park Theatre.

Sunday 17th November 2013 Read more...
Time waits for no man: The Fastest Clock in the Universe at the Old Red Lion Theatre

This 21st anniversary production of Philip Ridley's contemporary classic is a harsh lesson to the vain and deluded. Shockingly funny, but certainly not for the faint-hearted. At the Old Red Lion Theatre.

Tuesday 12th November 2013 Read more...
Paint is Thicker than Water: Mrs Lowry and Son at the Trafalgar Studios

This gritty and witty account of a period in L.S. Lowry's life depicts the painter's relationship with his mother. Dynamic acting and an eye for the emotional details of everyday disappointments, come together to create a sensitive piece of theatre. At the Trafalgar Studios.

Wednesday 6th November 2013 Read more...
Russian all over the place! The Government Inspector at Chickenshed Theatre

A superb adaptation of Gogol's classic comedy of mistaken identity, vanity and greed, in which townsfolk do their best to impress a government inspector. Fast-paced, stylised and very funny. Fawlty Towers even based an episode on it. At Chickenshed Theatre.

Wednesday 23rd October 2013 Read more...
Full of Beans: Days of Hope at Ye Olde Rose and Crown

All Star Productions proves yet again that artistic integrity comes first in this captivating tale of a country at war with itself and the familial bonds that have to be broken and resolved for want of a better life.  It's heartwarming and tragic but ultimately fulfilling.  At Ye Olde Rose and Crown.

Tuesday 15th October 2013 Read more...
Cold comfort cottage: Sitting With Thistle at the Lion and Unicorn Theatre

Some good moments cry out in this tense and pensive piece about a brother and sister on the edge of resolution after years of ignorant hostility. But the strain of having a dead body in the room isn't quite sustained. At the Lion and Unicorn Theatre.

Monday 14th October 2013 Read more...
Will the last person out turn off the light? The Barrier at the Park Theatre

There isn't anything overly contentious in this trivial neighbourly dispute over a security light, but it's spurious dialogue, pompous characters and daft execution make for a mostly uncomfortable bland experience. At the Park Theatre.

Tuesday 1st October 2013 Read more...
Quality Time: When Midnight Strikes at Upstairs at the Gatehouse

Will you solve the mystery of who Christopher is having an affair with before it's revealed? It doesn't matter – the story comes second to the fantastic cast and songs featured in this rare revival of a British musical that should really be more well known. The clock's ticking on this – go see it before the eleventh hour! At Upstairs at the Gatehouse.

Monday 16th September 2013 Read more...
The life of a living legend: Liza Liza Liza at the Tabard Theatre

In this new play by Richard Harris, Minnelli is given the trio treatment as her life is dissected under the glare of the ever present public spotlight. Three superb actresses capture Liza at various stages of her life, but together, often at odds with herself, in a clever naturalistically delivered script.  At the Tabard Theatre.

Monday 16th September 2013 Read more...
Corny and Bland: Bonnie and Clyde at the King's Head Theatre

This new take on Bonnie and Clyde's story does nothing to enhance historical fact and is too ropey in content and performance with a particularly plotless, pointless series of scenes and added musical numbers which although pleasant, cannot turn this sow's ear into a silk purse. At the King's Head Theatre.

Monday 2nd September 2013 Read more...
A huge gem: Little Me at Ye Olde Rose and Crown

All Star Productions present this rare revival of the incredulous life story of Belle Poitrine and how she managed to outlive most of her Beaus. Neil Simon's hilarious book, Carolyn Leigh's witty lyrics and Cy Coleman's melodious tunes lend themselves perfectly to the immense talents of director Brendan Matthew's stirling cast of 12 playing over 100 parts. At Ye Olde Rose and Crown.

Monday 19th August 2013 Read more...
[insert witty headline here]: [title of show] at the Landor Theatre

The London premiere of this Broadway musical about writing a musical may have a few too many in-jokes, but it's impossible not to share the laughter, hopes and fears of a creative team desperate to get recognised for their unique concept. One of the funniest and well performed modern musicals around with top class talent. At the Landor Theatre.

Thursday 15th August 2013 Read more...
A glittered reboot: Saucy Jack and the Space Vixens at the Leicester Square Theatre

As cult musicals go, Saucy Jack isn't in the same league as Rocky Horror but whether a fan or not, it's a couple of hours of escapism and sheer fun as a host of naughty-named characters pump up the volume and teach us that disco is in our hearts. It's a dazzling array of talent up close and personal but not in your face. At the Leicester Square Theatre.

Monday 12th August 2013 Read more...
Risky Revelations: Daytona at the Park Theatre

Actor-turned-writer Oliver Cotton pens a brand new play which tugs at the heart strings but is infused with sufficient humour and intrigue to prevent it from being too maudlin. Though the text could do with some trimming, the trio of Shearer, Lipman and Bowe tackle it head on with fervent execution. At the Park Theatre.

Tuesday 23rd July 2013 Read more...
Breaking the convent-ional habit: Nunsense A-men! at the Landor Theatre

Poisoned frozen nuns and a convent in financial crisis is the premise for one of the silliest musicals ever written to have survived over three decades. There's enough to amuse for anyone seeking a little escapism in this Mother Superior of musicals... and a little extra under those habits than you might find in a confessional box! At the Landor Theatre.

Thursday 4th July 2013 Read more...
Best keep Mum! The Comedy Of Oedipus at the Lion and Unicorn Theatre

Ali Salem's contemporary satire on the beastly regimes that populate certain parts of the world fails to inject much humour, largely due to its absurdity. While it does provoke some debate about fear and collective responsibility, it doesn't create sufficient impact to infuse us with the desire to make a change. At the Lion & Unicorn Theatre.

Sunday 23rd June 2013 Read more...
Bad education: The School For Scandal at the Park Theatre

Jessica Swayle's production of Sheridan's classic farce The School For Scandal is a stylistic mash-up and needs to settle in one place to make it more credible. The humour and moral message come through just fine, but the feast is more for the eyes than the ears. At the Park Theatre.

Monday 17th June 2013 Read more...
Rough justice for the damned: Knackerman at the White Bear Theatre Club

A gloriously ghoulish collection of departed souls make up the cast of colourful characters in Rosanna Negrotti's new play. It's an entertaining but lengthy whodunnit where you know, whatever the result, that no-one's going back to the land of the living! At the White Bear Theatre Club.

Monday 10th June 2013 Read more...
Show earlier articles...

See Joe Crystal's Google+ page

Read about our authors here