I’m not usually crazy about rankings and hierarchy in the creative arts so, please, see this as more of a summary of all the shows that really shook me. Except for the Number One. I’m all about cheerleading that star at the top of my own personal Christmas tree. But I loved each of these shows and, if you caught them, I hope you did too.
Naturally, facing what felt like a significant and unbreachable rift, instability and economic downturn was the likely outcome, which for the arts, could only mean one thing – cultural depletion – as audience seek safety in comfort and nostalgia.
Katie Mitchell directs Alice Birch’s play, being performed at the Royal Court Theatre as part of the theatre’s Jerwood New Playwrights programme. But what have critics been saying about it?
Time crashes into each other. Linear time ceases to exist. Past present and future elide. A triptych of female pain. Generations of hurt reach across the decades but can’t quite cross those last few feet; the only boundary between them their own isolation.
Random and topical thoughts and quotes gathered by My Theatre Mates contributor Aleks Sierz, first published on www.sierz.co.uk.
Love her or hate her, Katie Mitchell is surely our most bravely iconoclastic theatre director working in Britain today. If Robert Lepage is the magician who smoothes the cracks between technology and stagecraft, Katie Mitchell is the one who adds tough edginess.
Alice Birch’s new work, Anatomy of a Suicide, courageously investigates how the suicide of a mother affects the lives of a daughter and a granddaughter, haunts their own motherhood (or causing the lack of it) and their relationships.
And what an excruciating, yet devastatingly brilliant, two hours they are. The play shows episodes from the life of the women of one family spread over three time periods: one starts in the 1970s, the next in the 1990s and the third in the 2030s.