Leaving the former Young Vic production a lad far too young to remember 1968 said sadly to me: “It was the beginning of Now, wasn’t it?” He is right. James Graham’s play Best of Enemies, now spectacularly in the West End, is about the TV confrontations between the arch-conservative William F. Buckley and the maverick gay liberal Gore Vidal during an American election. But it also neatly prefigures today’s divisions, demonstrations and intolerances.
‘It’s a piece of bravura & massively entertaining’: TAMMY FAYE – Almeida Theatre ★★★★
Rarely in the history of Islington playgoing have so many first-nighters whooped so enthusiastically at Gospel rock. When cheers for Elton John’s anthems in Tammy Faye at the Almeida Theatre briefly abate it is often for quite different whoops, laughter at James Graham’s dry sharp script or moments of enchanted shock at an unexpected popup.
REVIEW ROUND-UP: Best of Enemies at the Young Vic Theatre
On LoveLondonLoveCulture, Emma Clarendon rounds up the reviews for the world premiere James Graham’s latest political drama, Best of Enemies, now running at the Young Vic Theatre until 22 January 2022.
‘A fine slice of time travel with an eye on contemporary political malaise’: BEST OF ENEMIES – Young Vic Theatre
James Graham’s latest history play has an eye on the present but a messy staging.
‘A political fairy tale but one worth reading to your kids’: BEST OF ENEMIES – Young Vic Theatre
James Graham finds an analogue for today’s culture war in 1968 USA care of Gore Vidal and William F Buckley.
‘An entertaining, instructive, questioning, honest play’: BEST OF ENEMIES – Young Vic Theatre ★★★★
James Graham’s mission might seem unfashionable: trawling 20th-century history and public culture, looking not for villains and heroes but for the nuances of human behaviour.
‘James Graham asks interesting questions about public posturing versus private belief’: BEST OF ENEMIES – Young Vic Theatre
James Graham’s new play Best of Enemies takes us back to the 1960s, demonstrating that the roots of our division partially lay in the creation of televised intellectual debating.
NEWS: New plays by Ben Okri & James Graham feature in the Young Vic’s new season
Young Vic artistic director Kwame Kwei-Armah has announced a new season of work, Welcome Back and Welcome Home, welcoming theatre-makers and audiences back through the doors for the first time since the venues’s 50th Birthday celebrations in October 2020.
NEWS: Theatremakers from all four nations are celebrated in The Stage 100 list
The Stage has unveiled its annual The Stage 100 list. The list has been re-imagined this year to celebrate individuals who have gone above and beyond in helping theatre survive the biggest crisis the industry has ever faced.
NEWS: James Graham, Alan Menken & Glenn Slater are adapting George Orwell’s Animal Farm into a new stage musical
Multi award-winning playwright James Graham is collaborating with Alan Menken and lyricist Glenn Slater to create a new musical based on George Orwell’s iconic novel Animal Farm.
‘Has an intimacy redolent of Graham’s earlier works’: BUBBLE – Nottingham Playhouse (Online review)
One of the highest profile events in Nottingham Playhouse’s Unlocked Festival was Bubble, a hybrid production, performed in-house and live streamed over the weekend to a potential international audience – a new James Graham comedy about life in lockdown.
NEWS: A new play from James Graham will feature in Nottingham Playhouse’s reopening season
A line-up including a new work from playwright James Graham will feature in Nottingham Playhouse Unlocked, Nottingham Playhouse’s three-week reopening season which runs from 21 October to 7 November 2020.
‘We’ve shown we’re not going without a fight’: Who really cares about what has happened to the theatre industry?
I accidentally wrote a viral tweet. It came out of a moment of possibly ill-thought frustration. Out of feeling brushed aside, dismissed one too many times. But wow did that tweet resonate.
‘These short pieces will provide valuable testimony for what people got up to in the great pandemic’: UNPRECEDENTED – Headlong Theatre (Online review)
Life as it is currently lived in 14 playlets: Most of the plays are about ten minutes in duration and punch well above their weight featuring writing by the likes of James Graham and April de Angelis.
Parliamentary power plays: Considering This House & other recent political dramas (not just by James Graham!)
When it was first performed in 2012 James Graham’s This House was an affectionate satire, using its 1970s setting to examine the still young Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government formed in 2010.
‘It is immediately clear how prescient it was’: THIS HOUSE – National Theatre (Online review)
The chaos of national politics in the mid-1970s seemed light years away in 2014, but how arrogant that assumption seems now.
‘Power is shown to be almost totally male-dominated’: THIS HOUSE – National Theatre (Online review)
The plotline of James Graham play covers several years during a period when majorities were slim and politics was a brutal business.
NEWS: Industry leaders launch coordinated effort to lobby for government support & welcome new taskforce
The theatre industry’s fightback was raised to a new level as, after more than two months of enforced venue closures, leaders coordinated efforts to pressure the government for further support, and DCMS appointed a new commissioner for Cultural Recovery.
NEWS: National Theatre at Home screens Tom Hiddleston’s Coriolanus & A Streetcar Named Desire with Gillian Anderson
The National Theatre has announced its third tranche of archive shows that will be streamed every Thursday at 7pm BST via its YouTube channel as part of lockdown initiative National Theatre at Home.
10 wish-list productions for future National Theatre At Home screenings
Following on from the instant success of National Theatre At Home streaming event, it’s got me thinking about all the other wonderful NT Live screenings that I’d love to come to the small screen as part of this series. I have narrowed it down to my top 10.