This musical has form in our family. My parents saw and frequently talked about the original production at Stratford East in the early sixties and I listened to the cast album as a child. I worked on the National Theatre circus tent version in the mid-nineties, and now I could take the minimoles to the anniversary revival by Stratford East. For those who don’t know this show (and why not), it is a unique combination of end-of-the pier music hall, Brecht and oral history which tells the story of WW1 focusing on casualties, the war machine and the stupidity of the leaders, through the popular songs of the era. Above all it features the songs sung by the soldiers – in the last era before song was something you listened to a recording of rather than someone singing it then and there.
Goodbyeee, goodbyeee; It’s a long Way to Tipperary; Keep the Home Fires Burning; the title song; Hold Your Hand out Naughty Boy; Pack Up Your Troubles – you’ll know every song once you hear it. There’s little to add other than this one of the most moving, bitingly satirical and funny collection » Continue Reading.