Please see below for a selection of press cuttings of past Fools & Kings shows.


★★★★ “A well-judged revival of a shrewd tragicomedy… Olivia Poulet is superb”. Evening Standard, Top Ten Pick

★★★★ “Superb… Nuanced… Absorbing… a convincing study of the destruction wreaked by wounded people.”  

Sunday Times

★★★★ “Astonishing… a play people should see… if theatre is there for anything, it’s to make sure we hear exactly these sorts of stories.”  

Time Out, Critics' Choice

★★★★ “Once it has you in its grip it doesn't let go… This is provocative, prescient drama.”

What's On Stage

★★★★½ “A truly powerful piece of theatre… leave you desperate to discuss what you’ve just seen with anyone you can find.”

The Public Reviews

★★★★  “Gut-wrenching…formidable talent… Arrestingly alive and bitterly funny.” CULTURE WHISPER

★★★★ “Profound”

Exeunt Magazine

“Brilliant play… polished production.”

The Stage

“striking and all-embracing”

British Theatre Guide

 “A terrific production of a truly wonderful play.”

Victoria Sadler

“Chicago is nothing without a crack, raunchy chorus and a zappy band for numbers like Razzle Dazzle: the production came up trumps here too (director Jack Sain, choreographer Katherine Skingsley, musical director Ed Whitehead). This was a thoroughly entertaining antidote to a dreary November afternoon.” The Oxford Times
“Chicago is a very ambitious musical to stage, but Fools & Kings Theatre Company rises to the challenge admirably. Jack Sain’s sophisticated direction is evident throughout and there is much about this production that is very impressive. If you have a ticket, hold on to it – you should definitely see this.” Oxford Theatre Review
“brought to life by a talented and dedicated cast and impressively professional direction… Sain certainly has a vision and a standard which he demands of his cast.” OxStu

"a play that grips its audience by the throat for over three hours, thrilling, exciting, deeply enjoyable... The cast are superb... Of course, the whole set design and play builds towards the final moment, and the way it is rendered on stage is remarkably impressive in a student production.  Watching it conveys the enormous amount of effort and talent poured into the play, and brings it to a moment of triumph." The Oxford Student

The overall standard of acting in Angels is very high....At its best you will laugh, cry, revel in tension and reflect on the challenging themes of Tony Kushner’s script. Overall, much credit should be given to Jack Sain, who has dealt very well with a challenging piece." The Cherwell

"This is brilliant, and made all the sweeter by its sense of having achieved an almost ridiculous ambition. With their impressive CVs and celebrity patronage, Fools & Kings are at the semi-pro end of the Oxford Student drama scene, but its easy to see how even the most seasoned company could have made a portentous, bum-numbing mess of Tony Kushner’s sprawling, maximalist, AIDS-as-millenial-metaphor epic, with its multiple characters, high-speed set changes, and switchback shifts between reality and fantasy, comedy and tragedy. Instead, we had over three hours of theatrical bravura with not a minute wasted – I could have watched more. I certainly didn’t tire of Barney White’s standout turn as dying monster Roy Cohn – rich with emotional depth... This is a moving piece of theatre whose difficulty means that you probably won’t get many chances to see it, so it’s well worth the investment." Daily Info

"a production of divine poignancy... As a play with a strong element of timelessness, Jack Sain’s production encapsulates the audience within a visual space...a bold, and clamouring production that met the demanding needs of the script."  Oxford Theatre Review

"an excellent set design, a powerful score and some brilliant acting...a good production, not easy-going and nor should it have been. And with 10% of profits going to the National AIDS Trust, it really is worth buying a ticket."  Oxford Theatre Review

"Arty Froushan puts in a brilliantly angsty performance as Prior’s Jewish partner, Louis, succeeding in being more emotionally cut up than his dying boyfriend. Credit must also go to Selali Fiamanya as drag queen Belize; he brought laughs by nonchalantly picking up a cup of coffee – and when he switches on the sarcasm the fun really starts....This play explores America and the troubled American psyche from some unlikely angles, and it gives us some unlikely angels too. Angels in America is a must see for anyone with an interest in politics across the pond, anyone who can agree with the definition of law as a ‘sweating organ’, or anyone who likes their jokes dark and their humour sadistic." The Oxford Tab

"Fools and Kings fine revival... Top quality stuff, featuring excellent, eerie music from Composer Nathan Klein." The Oxford Times


"Jack Sain is a confident and innovative director. There are few ostentatious technical elements; instead, the production trusts to the capabilities of its exemplar cast and material... A cast that are on the whole excellent. Their performances are perfectly judged - neither are over nor understated, a feat given the potentially sensational material they are working with." Oxford Theatre Review

"This is an extremely high-powered piece of theatre, guided by an assured directorial hand, buttressed by impressive production values, and possessing at its core a clutch of central performances so unerringly solid that for the length of the play, the four actors seemed to be engaged in a game of perpetual oneupmanship...Ever present throughout Fools & Kings' latest offering is Jack Sain's masterful direction, which achieved tidiness, clarity, and verisimilitude...About twenty minutes into the play it occurred to me that I had completely forgotten that I was watching actors on a stage - it felt instead as if I were watching real conversations taking place in real places, a sure sign that what I was watching was less of an amateurish student production and more akin to a piece of work of professional calibre...These four number amongst some of the finest performances I have seen in Oxford." Oxford Theatre Review

"Buy a ticket and prepare to be amazed... As intimately realistic as this play was, it still sought to remind the viewers of the artistry behind it: four frames, one set out for each character to stand in, (resourcefully used as entranecs and exits throughout), bookeneded the experience with a brave self-consciousness. The characters, with their captivating quarrels and casual quips, presented the most honest lie that I've seen on stage in a long time."

The Cherwell


"This is a rare treat... It is presented by Avanti, a newly formed theatre company set up to allow young talent to experience professional theatre, [and] the overall high quality of acting, and the enthusiasm of the company already shows that they are well on their way to achieving their aim." Richmond and Twickenham Times

"A narrative that is always absorbing and enjoyable" Surrey Comet

"Laurie is particularly strong as an appealing Posthumus, Rhys Jennings makes for a worldy, compassionate Belarius and Rhiannon Neads ahows promising in a number of smaller supporting roles and Alex Critoph finds a quiet strength as Imogen" There Ought To Be Clowns


"an exceptional debut... I urge you to go, listen hard, talk about it, and decide for yourself." The Cambridge Tab
"Compelling... it does a play that revels in ambiguity justice" Varsity



"Boredom as motive for cruelty and murder is the premise of this clever dark comedy... This absurdist play is fast-paced and edgy, with superb acting that leaves you enthralled throughout... The biggest criticism is that the cast did not take a deserved bow at the end of their first-rate performance." Three Weeks

"New Symposium Productions and their director Will Maynard ensure that this production of David Gieselmann's black comedy is extremely funny...It helps that the young cast are talented, with Francesca Wilding as Edith making the biggest impression... The cast bring much humour and intelligence to a bizarre play and deserve to fill the small theatre" British Theatre Guide
"Director Will Maynard has simply excelled in this production... Go and see this!" Ed Fringe

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