WILDE WITHOUT THE BOY/THE BALLAD OF READING GAOL – Rose Playhouse

In London theatre, Opinion, Plays, Reviews by Laura KresslyLeave a Comment

Near the end of his two-year imprisonment for gross indecency, Oscar Wilde was a man broken from hard labour, isolation and social disgrace. Until a sympathetic warden at Reading Gaol allowed him restricted writing privileges, he hadn’t been able to write at all. Provided with a single sheet of paper that would be collected and replaced when that one was filled, Wilde penned an 80-page letter of 50,000 words to the selfish lover who was his downfall, Lord Alfred ‘Bosie’ Douglas. Heavily edited and published posthumously by Wilde’s friend and former lover Robbie Ross, the chatty letter was titled “De Profundis”. After Wilde’s release, he wrote poem “The Ballad of Reading Gaol” whilst exiled in Paris; this work details the execution of a fellow inmate.

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Weekly Theatre Podcast: As You Like It, The Red Lion, The Importance of Being Earnest

In Audio, Features, Interviews, London theatre, Musicals, Native, Opinion, Plays, Reviews by As Yet Unnamed London Theatre PodcastLeave a Comment

On this week’s podcast, leading London theatre bloggers discuss views on three plays: As You Like It at Shakespeare’s Globe, The Importance of Being Earnest, starring David Suchet as Lady Bracknell, and Patrick Marber’s new play The Red Lion, starring Daniel Mays at the National, as well as the most recent London revival of Broadway musical I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change.

THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST – West End

In London theatre, Plays, Reviews by Libby PurvesLeave a Comment

The heart sinks beforehand: Oscar Wilde’s sunny comedy melodrama is too familiar: skipping from one well-worn epigram to the next, from handbag to muffin, butler to Bracknell until a theatregoing audience can be tempted to join in. Directors have tried every resuscitation technique – play-within-a-play, high-speed cutting, star casting, unexpected crooked sets – with no guarantee that it’ll work. But this time, Adrian Noble and his cast pull it off, and the old dear comes up fresh as a daisy, in sets of such traditionally gorgeous Edwardiana that they get their own round of applause, and without any gimmicks at all. Unless you count casting David Suchet as Lady Bracknell: and that is not a gimmick, but a welcome extension of the great man’s ability to rule a stage with one twitch of his black, black brows.

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THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST – West End

In London theatre, Plays, Reviews by Johnny FoxLeave a Comment

No one wants to piss on Poirot’s chips, but this really isn’t very good.

David Suchet is a superb actor. Like Angela Lansbury if you set aside his television detective work he still has an impressive pedigree even if West End appearances have been rare. But no director casting a well-funded revival of The Importance of Being Earnest would think of Suchet for Lady Bracknell any sooner than they’d ask Lansbury to play King Lear, and there is a whiff of vanity project about the enterprise.

THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST – Touring

In Plays, Regional theatre, Reviews by Matt MerrittLeave a Comment

The Mayflower Theatre, Southampton – until 6 June 2015

Okay, I’ll admit it, I went to the theatre to see an award-winning actor perform in a way you’d never expect of him… Not Bradley Cooper in the Elephant Man (though I did see that and I enjoyed his performance very much) but David Suchet stepping about as far away from the dapper Belgian detective with the distinctive moustache as we could reasonably expect!

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Review: The Trials of Oscar Wilde (Trafalgar Studios)

In Reviews by Johnny FoxLeave a Comment

Come on, it’s ticking off on the fingers time – what are the five things you know about Oscar Wilde?  Irish, witty, camp, wrote The Importance of Being Earnest and went to prison for sodomy?  If that’s the middle and both ends of your Wildean knowledge, you’ll find this show highly educational if not quite endlessly entertaining: for […]

The post Review: The Trials of Oscar Wilde (Trafalgar Studios) appeared first on JohnnyFox.

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Review: The Trials of Oscar Wilde (Trafalgar Studios)

In Reviews by Johnny FoxLeave a Comment

Come on, it’s ticking off on the fingers time – what are the five things you know about Oscar Wilde?  Irish, witty, camp, wrote The Importance of Being Earnest and went to prison for sodomy?  If that’s the middle and both ends of your Wildean knowledge, you’ll find this show highly educational if not quite endlessly entertaining: for […]

The post Review: The Trials of Oscar Wilde (Trafalgar Studios) appeared first on JohnnyFox.