Tea drinking features heavily in Dipo Baruwa-Etti’s posh kitchen-set play The Clinic at the Almeida Theatre. But this tea may or may not have intoxicating or calming effects; even those who fervently dislike infusions get a taste for it. And that is The Clinic, a mix of contemporary family drama and something more difficult to put a finger on.
I can now say I’ve seen Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio on stage. OK, so they were on telly on stage, but that is technically on stage. Kate and Leo were in Titanic mode, the favourite film of the son in Who Killed My Father. His homophobic father initially refuses to get him the video for his birthday.
Silence at the Donmar Warehouse is based on a non-fiction book by journalist Kavita Puri who interviewed people who lived through the partition of India in 1947 and subsequently settled in the UK.
There was a point while watching Monster at the Park Theatre when I realised I had my hand over my mouth. What was unfolding on stage was shocking, and I haven’t had a reaction like that to a play for quite a while.
Mark St Germain’s play Freud’s Last Session at the King’s Head Theatre in Islington is a compact yet powerful play which imagines a clash of intellect and reasoning between two famous minds.
I liked the tone of this production of Closer at the Lyric Hammersmith and the sense of sadness that underpinned it, even if I was glad to leave the characters behind. It is an interesting exploration of relationships with some nice production touches.
Roy Williams’ play The Fellowship centres on a small family unit, but there are a lot of big things going on. Dawn (Cherrelle Skeet) is grieving the loss of a child while caring for her terminally ill mother with little help from her high-flying lawyer sister Marcia (Suzette Llewellyn). She can tell her teenage son Jermaine (Ethan Hazzard) is lying to her, and if it’s about what she suspects, she will be fuming.
At the Harold Pinter Theatre this is The Seagull as a tragic love story turned up to the max. It opens up new avenues in what is a familiar play and takes a fresh approach to what you’d expect to see on a big West End stage.
The thing is, you can’t fault the acting in Jitney at the Old Vic – the actors are superb. And Tinuke Craig’s expert direction means the cab office setting doesn’t feel static or forced. But the play takes a long time to get to the interesting stuff and then leaves a lot hanging.
While elements of Britannicus at the Lyric Theatre Hammersmith feel like hollow embellishment, as a family drama about a toxic family who happens to be the ruling class it is a gripping yarn.
Amy Adams’ Amanda is a matriarch full of bustle and bristle in Jeremy Herrin’s production of The Glass Menagerie at the Duke of York’s Theatre. She is an irritating spark to her despondent and bored son and pushes her shy, nervous daughter Laura further into her own world. And, she is such a spark that you feel Amanda’s absence when she is on stage.
The Ministry of Lesbian Affairs at the Soho Theatre is one of those plays that unashamedly bursts off the stage, much like the lesbian choir around which the story revolves.
There is a stillness that descends over a theatre audience when they are gripped and fidgeting when they aren’t. In the first half of The Breach at Hampstead Theatre, the audience was fidgeting.
Gloria has taken refuge in her attic, distracting herself from the dark winter months and grief by playing punk and dictating entries for her memoir into her laptop.
The family at the centre of the story is that of Richard Myers (Robert Lindsay), an eminent geneticist who now has Parkinson’s Disease.
In Jonathan Crewe’s play Under the Radar, female journalist Lee Stilling (Eleanor Hill) is profiling male inventor Martin Christensen, who has built his own submarine.
Anthony McCarten’s new play The Collaboration at the Young Vic kicks off as you arrive in the auditorium with an 80s DJ set. It’s toe-tapping, hip and creates a party, edgy, youthful yet nostalgic atmosphere.
Henry V opens with a burst of energy at a club with a worse for wear party prince. It’s lifted from Henry IV part 2 and is an important reminder of Henry V’s past and subsequent transformation into a serious king.
The play follows Pierre, a successful surgeon who’s married and the father of a grown-up daughter, as he juggles his professional and family life with having a mistress.
Alistair McDowall’s The Glow at the Royal Court is a play I’ve had to ponder – a lot – and I still don’t have any firm conclusions.