Random and topical thoughts and quotes gathered by My Theatre Mates contributor Aleks Sierz, first published on www.sierz.co.uk.
This is certainly a major theatrical event — Cicero’s speeches, with their mixture of sarcasm and idealism, are great, but not everyone will enjoy the comic interpretation of some of these characters, and the storytelling does get a bit bogged down in the second part.
In Kevin Armento’s play Devil With The Blue Dress which is directed by Joshua McTaggart, we look at someone who has been on the world stage since the 1990s – Hillary Clinton.
Angela Griffin and Trevor White will star in the UK premiere of Building the Wall, the Trump-inspired dystopian political thriller, written by Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning writer Robert Schenkkan.
Although The Best Man’s message — that being defeated can be a victory of sorts — is appealingly paradoxical, it is unlikely to make your heart race very fast.
The best that can be said about Chris Goode’s Jubilee is that it must surely be in the running for the hotly contested accolade of the worst show of the whole decade.
For Julius Caesar at the Bridge Theatre, Hytner has taken out the stalls seats of the new Bridge Theatre and created a promenade performance which begins, like a Trump rally, with a warm-up. It’s one of the best pre-shows I’ve ever seen.
Javaad Alipoor explores the dark world of lonely young men, seething with resentment, attracted by tech-savvy extremist groups, in The Believers Are But Brothers at the Bush Theatre.
From its haunting title, to its moments of explosive dialogue, this is a modern classic, which when it was first staged won Mamet the Pulitzer Prize. Set in Chicago, it shows a group of slick hustlers who have to sell tracts of indifferent Florida real estate.
While not Political Plays per se, over the past fortnight, I’ve seen several productions that have reminded me that theatre can play an important part in telling stories of resistance.
Many on the panel, and in the audience, also shared personal stories as immigrants and/or children of immigrants – and how they felt affected by Powell’s speech and its aftermath.
It’s not just umbrella festival programmes that keep myself and other London theatregoers busy in August. Here are some thoughts (and connections) on the other plays and musicals I’ve seen over the past week that are worth a look: Mrs Orwell, King Cowboy Rufus Rules the Universe, Boom and Salad Days.
New play about participation and democracy is entertaining enough, but a bit too tricksy and too so-what-ish?
The 1960s were “hilarious”, says one young character in this revival, starring Broadway icon Stockard Channing, of Alexi Kaye Campbell’s 2009 family drama at the Trafalgar Studios. How so? “Oh you know, the clothes, the hair, the raging idealism.”
Two highly political plays based on real-life world affairs will come to the West End this year from New York, via the National Theatre. Later this month, for one night only, there’s a staged reading of All the President’s Men?, Nicolas Kent‘s edited transcripts from the Senate confirmation hearings for President Trump’s (highly controversial) Cabinet. And in the autumn, JT …
What would Bertolt Brecht have made of Donald Trump? Brecht’s “epic theatre” was sparked by the rise of Nazism in 1930s Germany. Many pundits have likened the political period we’ve now entered with that dark decade of the twentieth century.
Updating the classics is not without its pitfalls. How can a modern audience, which has a completely different set of religious beliefs, relate to a 17th-century morality tale in which the lead character behaves badly, and I mean really badly, but gets his comeuppance by being roasted in hell fire?
Anyone Can Whistle: the Sondheim flop whose signal moment in the original 1964 production was when a dancer fell into the orchestra pit, inadvertently killing a musician.
As someone who makes a living championing theatre, one of the things that really delights me about the grass-roots activism sprouting up all around me in our increasingly illiberal age of Trump and Brexit is how much of it is being driven by theatre colleagues.
The company of The Kite Runner have started a nightly curtain-call ritual, reading out a response to US President Donald Trump’s executive order this past week banning Syrian refugees as well as all immigrants from seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States. Worth watching and sharing.