Nicholas Wright’s sharp play imagines the US touring production of the first black Othello and its aftermath in the uneasy years of the McCarthyite search for Communist sympathisers.
Mates blogger: Libby Purves
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The latest from Libby on MyTheatreMates
Arthur Schnitzler was, like Chekhov, a doctor; he was an Austrian Jew at a time when mistrust was rising. The Doctor belongs passionately to that time: but director Robert Icke’s very free adaptation belongs – urgently and exhilaratingly – to our own.
It is always a pleasure to see a professional debut which not only shines in itself but reminds us that belonging to a 21st-century, loose-limbed-liberal post-Christian generation doesn’t stop a new actor from empathising and utterly containing a character from another age.
Deep under the trees, beyond Jimmy’s meerkat and camel enclosures lies a 1960’s beach: shelter, deckchairs and lounging teens, Mods and Rockers, Montague and Capulet.
The Ring Cycle is opera’s biggest box set: a sixteen-hour binge of dwarves, nymphs, dragons, gods, heroes and monsters, all suspended inside one of the greatest philosophical conundrums expressed by the human mind – and set to glorious, extraordinary music.
Gail Louw’s play Shackleton’s Carpenter and Malcolm Rennie’s tremendous, unforgettable performance, were directed by Tony Milner of the New Vic before his death. This production – which tours single nights through autumn and winter, is in his memory. If you catch it, you won’t forget it.
Violetta is a reduction of Verdi’s La traviata, using only three characters: the doomed courtesan Violetta, her idealistic yet immature lover Alfredo, and – surprise! Alfredo’s mother.
If the overall effect of Oklahoma! at Chichester Festival Theatre is more of a puzzle-play than a lollipop romp, so much the better.
Clive Owen and Lia Williams do justice to the wild lush text of The Night Of The Iguana at the Noel Coward Theatre, rich in wonder and filth, corruption and beauty.
We love a starry debut, especially on opening night in a huge theatre: a 21-year-old not yet through drama school making a stonking, belting first professional appearance in a title role. So Laurence Connor knew what he was doing when he cast young Jac Yarrow in Joseph & The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
David Hare has made as much sense of Ibsen’s sprawling masterpiece Peer Gynt as seems possible.
What Gregory Doran frames most brilliantly in Measure For Measure at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford upon Avon is the is the central confusion of morality.
Jack Thorne and director John Tiffany are the Harry Potter team. They know how not to bore. But they’ve been here before too in a Royal Court state-of-the-nation mood, and they can make pieces like The End of History just as gripping.
It felt like a pilgrimage, homage to pay. Thirty-seven years ago Michael Frayn’s greatest of comedies, Noises Off, a wicked love-song to the great age of touring rep, premiered in this very theatre.
The Secret Diary Of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾ The Musical is the result of Jake Brunger and Pippa Cleary badgering the late Sue Townsend to be allowed to do it, and with poppy tunes and a high-spirited cast under Luke Sheppard, it works surprisingly well.
First of all let’s say that Andrew Scott is a marvel in Present Laughter, a 21st century Ur-Coward hero, who manages to do it without either the matey crassness lately inflicted on the part by Rufus Hound, or that retro, clipped Cowardspeak which echoes the Master too much.
What the hell more do you want of a night out over a pub? Hurry to After Dark at the Finborough Theatre. It’ll take your mind off Boris…
This 25th anniversary revival of David Greig’s play Europe is, for the most part, a long chin scratch about home, belonging and division.
Rupert Goold gives his production of The Hunt enough thriller-like pacing and intensity to keep us hooked.
This production of Pictures of Dorian Gray at Jermyn Street Theatre is intriguing, and offers chances to see the parts played differently, but there are inevitable losses.
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