• Physical Theatre
  • By Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas
  • Producer: Glynis Henderson Production and Stomp Productions
  • Cast Includes: Phil Batchelor, Shae Carroll, Omari Carter, Louise Durand, Emma King, James Lane
  • New Theatre, Oxford
  • 13-17 October 2015 and then touring
  • Review by Mel Cooper
  • 18 October 2015
4.0Reviewer's Rating

This unique show featuring non-stop movement and percussion continues to tour and, if anything, in this incarnation, is better and more appealing than ever. The team of dancers is impeccable in its timing, performing extraordinary feats that are both breathtakingly precise and imaginative. Part of the pleasure of the show is marveling and how they pull off the extremely difficult routines. If you have not seen the show, you probably cannot really imagine its content or impact despite the photos of people hurling themselves about with garbage can lids on their feet. Believe me, it is much more varied and imaginative than that.

The show has a circular structure and is full of surprises, astonishing athletics and an amazing amount of variety considering that it’s basic and simple in its premise and mainly comprises a lot of percussion and moving about to the rhythms of that percussion. But the energy and innovative variations on the theme are phenomenal. The show is also a mime. The audience is, at times, involved and has to clap out rhythms and respond to wordless instructions from the stage. Non-stop for nearly two hours, the team on the stage never lets up, and never stops engaging with the audience; and the best of the older routines I saw last time round have certainly been brilliantly supplemented by new material – but do not fear; the dustbin dance climax is still in the show.

The physical comedy is some of the best you will see outside of reruns of silent films, totally wordless, immediately comprehensible, and utterly captivating. The show was originally created in Brighton, UK, in the summer of 1991 by Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas, so we are coming up for a 25th anniversary celebration soon. It still comes across as fresh and remarkably witty throughout; is genuinely breathtaking in most of its routines; and is, of course, very loud. You should see it if you can; but if you have sensitive ears take along some earplugs. I also think it is a fine family entertainment. The show is touring extensively in several countries; and also continues to play in London after 13 years. I recommend it highly! Catch it wherever you can. For more information see: http://www.stomponline.com/.


83% off tickets via: http://www.cheaptheatretickets.com/stomp/

About The Author

Profile photo of Mel Cooper

Canadian-born Mel Cooper came to the UK to study at Oxford and stayed, captivated by the culture and history of the welcoming and tolerant society of Britain. He founded the magazine Opera Now. He was a consultant to the Japanese broadcaster NHK, a broadcaster on British Satellite Broadcasting and a member of the team that started Classic FM on which he broadcast shows like Classic America and Authentic Performance. After working with the Genesis Foundation on helping to fund arts projects, he continues to write, review and lecture on music and literature.


Your email address will not be published.