Critical Chinwag is a new review & social night by me (Hi, I’m Bud by the way!) and NTW TEAM. 

Members: 109
Latest Activity: Jan 19, 2017


Critical Chinwag is an an opportunity to see a variety of different performances. It allows for bigger theatre discussion across Wales on the NTW pages and encourage more theatre chin-wagging. Reviewing a show on your own can be scary so through having a chat in a group you can have more confidence and freedom to say what you want.

Simply, Critical Chinwag is a way for you to see different performances, discuss theatre and meet new and interesting people! 

When you come to a Critical Chinwag night you will receive...

- A free ticket for the selected show

- A post-show bevvy (wine, beer, sangria, squash...)

- A chance to discuss theatre and meet new people

In return we ask for you to...

- As a group, give your honest opinions of the show.

- Tweet and blog your thoughts on here and Twitter

- Have a good chin-wag and enjoy your night!

To be involved...

You must be a member of NTW TEAM to come to a Critical Chinwag night - If you are not a member, you can find more info about TEAM and become a member here 

We offer a small amount of tickets for each show, so if you are not successful the first time fear not! It’s nothing personal, just keep on trying! And all you need to do is send me an e-mail by the deadline specified for each night. 

Details of each events will be updated on here so keep your eyes peeled! And if you want to find out more feel free to e-mail me on

Discussion Forum

My Body Welsh - Critical Chinwag @Galeri Caernarfon 26.1.17

(Originally posted on Rachel Risen's blog pages on January 19th 2017)Would you like the chance to see a piece of current theatre for free and join a group of us in the bar afterwards for a chat about…Continue

Started by rachel rosen Jan 19, 2017.

Light Waves Dark Skies

Here's my review of We Made This' Light Waves Dark Skies:…Continue

Started by Tom Wentworth Dec 8, 2016.

Can Yr Adar/ Birdsong, Theatr Mwldan

I was curious to see this performance, and a little unconvinced that it would work. A bilingual fusion of soul folk and jazz to tell the tale of a Welsh rainforest (is there such a thing?) seemed a…Continue

Tags: Welsh, bilingual, Crawford, Meriel, Kizzy

Started by Rozanna Niazi Nov 7, 2016.


Hello! It's that time again... Yes, it's Critical Chinwag! So do come and join me for TEAM's always popular social and review event.This time I'm very excited to be hosting the Critical Chinwag for…Continue

Started by Tom Wentworth Nov 5, 2016.


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Comment by Ben Tinniswood on March 12, 2016 at 9:15

Four days after watching Cosy at the WMC I'm still confused about my feelings towards this piece.

There is a great deal to like about Kate O'Reilly's play. The piece is brimming with wonderful words, the phrase “People used to care, now it's a profession” has swum around my head ever since. A line that says so much about our increasingly selfish human condition in the 21st century.

The performances are universally strong. Sara Beer's Maureen, in particular is perfectly pitched, hitting every joke in a wonderfully dry & assured manner. Sarah & Sharon Morgan's Rose have strong echoes of Beckett's Hamm & Clov. In fact, dealing with the same subject of the pending end to their existence & attempting to leave, I imagine the similarities are very deliberate.

The setting too, is strikingly minimal. A set of armchairs, reminiscent of the dayroom in a care home. Having spent a great deal of time in places like this myslef, it reminds me of what can sometimes be quite a difficult experience of witnessing people sat around, waiting to die. The almost constant manoeuvring of the chairs representing the power struggle between the various characters furthers the Beckett comparisons.

So what was it that has left me with uncertain emotions about this production? Maybe part of it was the subject matter. The idea of making a choice to end one's existence, though undeniably an important topic, is not one that I, personally, have a problem talking about. I also could never quite find a way in to engage emotionally with the characters. This meant the discourse was interesting on an intellectual level, but I didn't care enough about anyone to feel anything for their own predicaments. This may have been to do with my physical distance from them, which leads me on to...

The Weston Studio is not the most comfortable space to watch a play, particularly an intimate piece like Cosy. It does feel like going to a show in a School gymnasium. The seats, if you are taller than 5'5” are also rather uncomfortable. I also made the mistake of sitting quite far back from the stage. I think I might've engaged better with the play in a more intimate setting.

In conclusion, I'd like to hear Cosy as a radio play. Such rich language needs to be heard sat in a comfy chair at home on a good set of speakers that put you in the same room as the characters. 

Comment by Claire Louise Prosser on March 6, 2016 at 19:13

Ryan Smith’s version of Love Labours Won was brought to life by the talented cast of Avant Theatre Company, bringing it right up to present day. Not just present day, but made local and relevant to us, in the Rhondda Valleys with the set of the ‘Bard Head’ mimicking that of our local rugby club. Great to know this was supported by a local business too. The venue, a stone’s throw from my childhood house, is the venue that my Grandad remembered being the ‘Pictures.’ After it being quietly worked on for a couple of years now, it has finally opened to the public. The Savoy Theatre, joins in as being one of the local theatres in the Rhondda Valleys which I hope people cherish, use and enjoy because they are local and ours and out of the Cardiff circle. I feel this venue has the potential of being a multi-use hub for the community- and I was so delighted to enter the doors to support this fantastic show there.

So, Love Labours Won, my questions before hand were whether I would follow the language as my memory cast me back to all of the underlining and translation going on in my GCSE English classroom. I needn’t have been worried about this, the characters were played with such energy, delivering every role and action on point, that the language slipped into the background and became the language of us all. I was also wondering whether, in the 400 year celebration - Is Shakespeare still exciting, relevant and necessary in 2016? …. Continue reading….here 

Full Review Here

Comment by Jane Prosser on March 6, 2016 at 16:49

Critical Chinwag: Love Labours Won Tonyrefail Thursday 3rd March 2016.

The performance of Love Labours Won on March 3rd in the Savoy Theatre, Tonyrefail was excellent, the cast showed a great deal of enthusiasm and professionalism. It was amazing to think that I was watching this production in the street on which I live. Seeing a play with Shakespearian type dialogue set in a modern Valleys club setting and with contemporary costume made the play that much more relevant to everyone watching.

It was quite something to discover, during the Critical Chinwag, that the cast had not been together for very long. The attention to detail in their preparation had certainly paid off. They seemed keen to bring different types of shows to audiences in the Valleys and had received positive feedback from the locals they had met, which was very nice to hear.   

Jane Prosser

Comment by Isabelle Paige on November 17, 2015 at 20:43
Just a reminder that this is happening tomorrow evening in Cardiff. It's free, and should be a fun and engaging couple of hours!
Comment by Isabelle Paige on October 28, 2015 at 14:56
My colleague and I have created a music theatre piece which we have toured to small regional venues on and off for two years, but we have decided we need to make some changes. To help us do that we have organised a performance and feedback night in Cardiff on 18th November specifically for an invited audience of theatre makers and creative minds. We would like to invite you as people who can give us useful feedback, and crucially who will not just tell us what we want to hear. We are looking for honest, objective critique in the spirit of development. Almost like a focus group for the show!

On this occasion the tickets will be free; your feedback will be payment. The show will start at 7.30pm, running until around 9pm including a short interval, and then we will join the audience in a discussion of the show, asking specific questions, and taking feedback, for anything up to an hour. This will give us the opportunity to really zone in on what could be improved. 
We did apply for the Scratch season at The Other Room that has just taken place, but were told the piece was too developed for that. What we have is a full show; we just want to sharpen its teeth and shine its boots. We want the audience to feel both amusement and unease; we would love you to help us achieve the perfect balance of those feelings. There is a saying that many hands make light work. We believe that many heads make good work!

Aside from the obvious benefits to us and our show that your feedback will provide, we are also keen to nurture the spirit of community within the arts in Cardiff. We hope that the evening will be an enjoyable and stimulating opportunity for discourse, for all who attend.
The venue for the evening will be Little Man Coffee Co., the management team of which is very supportive of this kind of local creative interaction.
The show itself, Behind the Blinds, is a series of darkly comic songs in the vein of Tim Minchin performed by a married couple, gradually revealing more and more about their neighbours and themselves. 
The bar will open all evening for wine, beer and free popcorn!

In a nutshell:

What? Behind The Blinds
When? Wed 18th November, 7.30pm
Where? Little Man Coffee Co., Bridge Street, Cardiff
Who? Isabelle Paige and Richard Watson
Why? Development. Fun. POPCORN.

If you are able to attend, it would be great if you could RSVP via email to by 6th November. That way we can assess numbers and invite more people if required. We are not advertising the performance publicly because of the very specific nature of the evening. We feel like the optimum number of people for the focus group is around 25; more than that might be difficult to facilitate, and less won't feel like a full audience. So if you could let us know your intentions that would be very helpful. You are very welcome to bring friends but again please let us know by 6th November. 
We very much hope you can make it!

Warm wishes,
Isabelle Paige
On behalf of Serrated Edge Theatre
Comment by Jac Ifan Moore on October 15, 2015 at 14:32

You can find my blog post on Drowned Girl by Kelly Jones, here.

Comment by Laura Fay Thomas on October 5, 2015 at 16:29

The next Critical Chinwag event will be happening this Friday 09th October 8pm to watch August012's new production, Yuri at Chapter Arts Centre!

Read more here:


Comment by Christina Handke on October 4, 2015 at 12:05

Hi everyone, please find my critical chinwag blog post here: Critical Chinwag- The Drowned Girl- Kelly Jones

Comment by Sophie Herrmann on October 2, 2015 at 9:35

Drowned Girl

The play. I wasn't sure what to expect. This was only my second attendance at a one woman play and Kelly's previous work was not known to me before I sat down. I liked the way it was written. The content was sentimental rather than thrilling but relate-able- I'm sure every one can recall fancy dress costumes made from cereal boxes and maybe even a mermaid tail themselves! The stories of the fake Kellogs were entertaining, along with a few other laugh out loud lines which I won't ruin for you by quoting... 

Now for the critical bit-

Some of the mermaid/ sea metaphors washed over me a little too quickly (poor attempt there at doing a Kelly style ocean reference!) as the pacing was sometimes a little fast for me but the ASDA stories were entertaining and inclusion of other character voices was great. I liked the running section the most! 

Not sure why the technician was on stage as didn't feel like Kelly needed him there but other than that I thought the sound was beautifully subtle. 

Comment by Ben Tinniswood on June 8, 2015 at 10:27

Hola Chinwaggers,

Time for another Critical Chinwag in Cardiff...

23rd June, Chapter: "This is how we die"

It's promising to be a good one.

Sign up via:



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