There’s much to delight in Sarah DeLappe’s punchy debut play, an American account of a group of teenage girl soccer players.
Mates blogger: Carole Woddis
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Though Robert Icke’s didacticism can be irritating, this Wild Duck undoubtedly pulls its modern audience into Ibsen’s tense, spiralling emotions to powerful effect.
They don’t come much more glitzy than a new Sondheim production in the West End. That Company is one of Sondheim’s most popular if not THE most popular of his musicals could be gauged by the roar that went up on opening night even before the lights had dimmed.
As opening statements go, Kwame Kwei-Armah’s musical adaptation of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, imported from New York’s Public Theater is probably as joyous a marker of future intent as you could wish for.
I’m a Phoenix, Bitch is Bryony Kimmings’ story of survival but told with a flair, emotional and physical honesty and theatrical artistry that is, often, breathtaking in its courage.
There’s every reason why Josie Rourke should have chosen Measure for Measure to direct in her final season as the Donmar’s artistic director. Anyone with half an ear to public events in the arena of gender relations and abuse of power in the past two years would recognise its extraordinary pertinence.
After huge UK successes with The Father, The Mother, The Truth and The Lie, now comes Florian Zeller’s The Height of the Storm, once again in the limpid, easy-on-the-ear translation of Christopher Hampton.
In Gemma Kerr’s economic but effective production of To Have to Shoot Irishmen for Lizzie Nunnery’s own company, Almanac Arts, it is the atmosphere conjured of the complexities of a blood-riddled Dublin in the throes of the 1916 Easter Rising against a background of the Great War that propels this drama into the mind.
You enter dark places when you enter the Royal Court and sometimes that can be enthralling and exhilarating. But there needs to be some kind of uplift. Sadly this time, it wasn’t present.
Timing is everything. When Foxfinder opened at the Finborough in December 2011, it was hailed as a ‘darkly thrilling’ new voice and subsequently earned its writer, Dawn King, a glut of awards from the Royal National Theatre Foundation Playwright scheme to a Pearson Award Playwright-in-Residence bursary.https://mytheatremates.entstix.com/tickets/foxfinder
Sometimes you just know you’ve seen the future. I missed seeing Misty at the Bush. I can only imagine that for once, the transfer has settled it into an even better, more appropriate venue.
Missing is made by the brilliant quality of its performer/dancers as well as Dave Price’s pounding sound-track and Chris Swain and Lahav’s lighting underscoring changes of scene, mood and outcome.
Midsummer is indeed a sweet, imaginative rom-com celebrating the madness and delirium of midsummer and the value of taking risks in life and love.
John Goodwin, who has died at the age of 97, was one of the most influential behind-the-scenes figures of British subsidised theatre in the latter half of the 20th century, admired and sometimes feared in equal measure.
There is no mistaking the anger that informs and pulsates through the piece like a roaring fire. But this is an Emilia for our life and times, bringing the past and present and hopefully the future into glorious unison.
Aristocrats does show once again Brian Friel’s remarkable ability to understand and cross religious and personal boundaries, but this time it fails to grapple the heart with quite the keenness of some of his other work.
Overall, then, Van Kampen’s production of Othello is a bold, zippy, lively affair that slips neatly into today’s sensibilities, underlining its message of the destructiveness of jealousy, the violent potential of unfulfilled ambition and the abuse of women.
A small, quiet important play for our times, Charlotte Jones’ The Meeting is led by a luminous, fiercely honest performance by Lydia Leonard as Rachel and Gerald Kyd as the puzzled ultimately broad-shouldered Adam.
Like two of its major successes last year, Oslo and Network, and despite some flaws, The Lehman Trilogy is another unmissable state-of-our-world account from the NT. Do see it if you can.
The Wooster Group’s Town Hall Affair is a beautiful, dedicated piece of craftsmanship, highly technically and artistically accomplished but in comparison with material in earlier years, it seemed to me, less dangerous, more controlled.
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