In great plays a scene, character or domestic confrontation can be both appalling and comic: pity, terror and barks of shocked laughter are not incompatible even within a sentence. Ibsen knew that, but in the Norwegian rebel’s grim late works it takes a relaxed director and some weapons-grade actors to keep that balance. Cue Nicholas Hytner, Simon Russell Beale and Lia Williams: rescuing, for me and for good, a play (John Gabriel Borkman at the Bridge Theatre) I hated last time I saw it.
The Southbury Child is a fine play, sharply written with some really strong unexpected laughs and a heartstopping ending. Its subtleties of character ask a great deal (not in vain) from the cast.
David Hare’s new play is a history lesson. New York city planner Robert Moses shaped the modern city by supplying it with expressways and parkways.
It is not often I resort to drawing in the notebook, but there it is: half an hour into the first part of David Hare’s play about the city planner Robert Moses, whose demonic energy built modern New York between the 1920s and the ’60s.
On LoveLondonLoveCulture, Emma Clarendon rounds up the reviews for the premiere stage adaptation of Philip Pullman’s fantasy tale The Book of Dust – La Belle Sauvage, now at London’s Bridge Theatre.
I set out to chronicle and celebrate the return of live theatre since May 2021. And this will follow. But when I totted up the 2021 score – 60 theatre nights, 30 being completely new plays and 19 brand-new productions – it seemed to me only decent to pause, look back at the year before.
First things first: this is the most wonderfully evocative, romantic and dramatic bit of set-projection you will see all year.
Nicholas Hytner returns to the world of Philip Pullman with an impressively atmospheric take on The Book of Dust – La Belle Sauvage at the Bridge Theatre.
Three-time Olivier award-winning Alex Jennings will lead the cast in the world premiere of The Southbury Child, the new play by BAFTA winner Stephen Beresford directed by Nicholas Hytner.
National Theatre Live will return with a new programme of four productions to be broadcast to audiences worldwide in cinemas, in January.
This feels like a howl of baffled frustration, from a millennial generation unable to deal with the emotional legacy of a long-ago slave trade.
On LoveLondonLoveCulture, Emma Clarendon rounds up the reviews for Polly Findlay’s European premiere production of White Noise, by Pulitzer Prize-winning US playwright Suzan Lori-Parks.
Find out what critics have had to say about the world premiere of Nina Raine’s new play Bach & Sons at the Bridge Theatre.
Dates are now confirmed for Philip Pullman’s The Book of Dust – La Belle Sauvage at the Bridge Theatre. Directed by Nicholas Hytner in Bryony Lavery’s new stage adaptation which takes place 12 years before Pullman’s epic His Dark Materials trilogy, performances are from 2 December 2021 to 19 February 2022 with opening night on 14 December.
Bach & Sons at the Bridge Theatre is a lovely play: domestic and intellectual, dryly wise and recklessly passionate. It harmonizes the bawdy and the holy, the loving and the lyrical.
Audiences go to the theatre for pleasure, not work; critics need to remember that their work is someone else’s pleasure.
An intimate and overwhelming experience in spellbinding miniature, Vox Motus’ Flight at the Bridge Theatre offers 45 minutes of quietly exquisite storytelling that packs a powerful punch.
As theatre next week starts to finally edge cautiously out of a full lockdown of over five full months, plus only very intermittent appearances in the nine months before that, the question arises will the audiences be there for it?
Simon Russell Beale will play JS Bach in the world premiere of Nina Raine’s Bach & Sons, directed by Nicholas Hytner at the Bridge Theatre from 23 June to 9 September 2021 with opening night on 29 June 2021.
Flight feels like proper theatre as we, alone in our tiny lonely booths, look out on a harsh world, transported with pity and terror.