In its incorporation of Howards End and the conversation between its fictional literary inspiration and its contemporary – Matthew Lopez – The Inheritance manages to create something wholly fresh and original about denial, truth and progress.
Victoria’s Malthouse Theatre and Black Swan Theatre’s joint production of Picnic at Hanging Rock does have its moments of scariness and there are fine, spirited performances from its quintet of female actors.
Told by an Idiot’s stage adaptation of Simon Leys’ acclaimed counter to the-great-man-of-history novella The Death of Napoleon though asks the useful question that gels nicely with the common stock of our age of conspiracy theories and ‘fake news’. What if…?
An interesting corrective to those soft-focus romantic images of rural equanimity, in the end, Gundog doesn’t quite come off. But, like grandad’s homily to his family, Longman too has bravely tried to capture something of the eternal and intangible: human attachment to the land.
The second of a brace of plays running in rep at the Southwark Playhouse, Russian writing star, Mikhai Durnenkov’s The War Has Not Yet Started – featuring Mark Quartley, Sarah Hadland and Hannah Britland – is quirky and unsettling.
With the demise of the repertory system, it is the fringe and alternative theatre that has stealthily and often in unrecognised ways provided the apprenticeship and forcing house in recent years for all that is best in our theatrical, cinematic and televisual life.
Seiriol Davies’s How to Win Against History is not quite like anything I’ve ever seen before. But then again, it is. A pastiche, a satire, a brilliant piece of aesthetic campery on a par with some of the best, wackiest shows of the alternative, gay scene of the late 1980s and ‘90s.