Reinterpreting the women of Greek mythology for today, the theatrical enterprise of 15 Heroines is a major achievement and a highlight of the year, digital or otherwise.
Sharon D. Clarke and Katherine Parkinson are among the cast for new audio project Written on the Waves presented by 45North and Ellie Keel Productions.
The Show Must Go Online was firmly back in history mode with the beginning of Shakespeare’s second tetralogy in Richard II. Not quite as much bloodshed as the previous set of histories that we’ve seen – more posturing and challenging than anything.
As with last year, there were too many brilliant performances to restrict this to one combined list – so once again I’ve split them up into male and female performances.
Discover what critics made of Adjoa Andoh and Lynette Linton’s new production of Richard II at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse.
Normally I do two of these – Top Ten Shows and Top Ten Performances – but this year I’m combining the two – plus some sundry other awards.
With its great mix of pointed exchanges, convincing plotting, relevant issues, sense of learning from experience and emotional integrity, this is a brilliant production of a truly wonderful play.
If Nicholas Hytner’s concept for Julius Caesar at the Bridge Theatre was applied with as much thought and skill as the staging, this would be a truly fantastic production.
Julius Caesar really isn’t Shakespeare’s best play, there’s very little poetry in the lines and after the assassination, the plot’s far from clear, but this production makes it accessible.
So would I go to more Shakespeare after this experience seeing Julius Caesar,? Yes, I would. More importantly, could I see myself as a regular visitor to the Bridge Theatre? That has to be an emphatic yes.
Surrounded by those with seated tickets and lorded over by scene after scene of masterclasses in the craft, the cheap seats in the pit for Julius Caesar at the Bridge Theatre are without doubt the best.
It is rarely a play that moves you and so it is here, even though Nicholas Hytner’s production of Julius Caesar at the Bridge Theatre, London does provide moments of intellectual stimulus.
Nicholas Hytner’s production of Julius Caesar at the Bridge Theatre is nothing short of a Roman triumph, capturing the wonderful lyricism of Shakespeare’s writing, in what are some of his most beautiful speeches, with an urgency of action that means two hours just races by.
It feels important to recognise what the NT (and the Old Vic) were trying to achieve, though. Queer Theatre looked “at how theatre has charted the LGBT+ experience through a series of rehearsed readings, exhibitions, talks and screenings” and if only one looked at lesbian women, two of the readings were written by women.
There was a special currency for Sarah Daniels’ Neaptide being the opening play in the #ntQueer season as this 1986 drama was actually the first by a living female playwright at the National Theatre – an astonishing fact all told.
A Theatre Trip for Every Child, Lewisham is a new giving scheme to provide a free theatre ticket for every 5-year-old in the Borough of Lewisham. ‘Every Child’ enables businesses and individuals to give a local child the chance to experience the magic of theatre.
Frankie Bradshaw’s design for Assata Taught Me at the Gate Theatre is nothing short of wondrous, with its turquoise walls patched with corrugated iron, faded tiles on the floor. Along with Jack Weir’s lighting, all the colourful character of old Havana is evoked, along with the complex history right up to its contemporary situation.
Off West End Awards winner Frankie Bradshaw (Best Set Design, Adding Machine at The Finborough) strikes again – the Gate Theatre is transformed into a ramshackle Havana apartment for Assata Taught Me.
Christopher Hampton’s great adaptation of this 18th-century classic triumphs, despite a poor performance from Dominic West.
It’s a question of faithfulness. Should an adaptation be faithful to its original source, or can it just take off and roam around like a free spirit? I must say that new versions of classics that stick closely to the original bore me rigid. I mean, if you’re not going to make big changes, why bother? I much prefer adaptations which are imaginative offshoots rather than those which remain slavish growths.
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