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Theatre review: The dark life of a designer in ‘McQueen’

By Will Stroude

Attitude’s Marcus James was in attendance as James Phillips brought his bio-drama about tragic fashion designer Alexander McQueen – starring Bluestone 42’s Stephen Wright and Glee’s Dianna Agron – to the London stage…

Dianna Agron as Dahlia and Stephen Wight as Lee in McQueen credit Specular

McQueen is an insightful and slick production that sheds light on the design icon’s mind and facets of what made this genius tick. Although it highlights elements of his egocentric and ruthless journey towards success, dropping stoic and caring supporters along the way, it portrays a highly troubled and depressed man. The play is carried on a roller coaster of torment and self-doubt in a spectacular performance by the unbelievably mesmerising, and physically bizarre look-alike doppelgänger, Stephen Wight.

Notable supporting performances include Tracey-Ann Oberman in her wistful, elegant and humorously soft ‘R’ pronouncing milliner; Isabella Blow, and Glee‘s ‘Quinn’ (Dianna Agron), who puts in a centred and balanced performance against Wight’s somewhat depressive and mad McQueen. This is a small-scale production on a big level of talent. The impressive LED set, simplistic and stylised choreography and McQueen’s own designs & collections that make interspersed appearances on stage in a runway-esque style, keep the design & style theme of this troubled icon’s genius designs in the forefront of why the fashion guru has a play written about him. However, this posthumous acclaim may irate die-hard fans that may take umbrage at certain character traits portrayed that should be left alone in a kinder memory of the man. Either way this is a stellar and quality production that is both visually stunning and stupendously performed. 3.5/5

Rating: 3.5/5

At St James Theatre, London, until June 27. For tickets visit


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