Harry Potter and the Cursed Child was the big winner at this year’s Critics’ Circle Theatre Awards, taking home three prizes, while elsewhere Glenda Jackson, Billie Piper and Stephen Dillane all won acting prizes.
I rounded up my personal choices in a recent blog and have enjoyed reading and publishing the scores of Year in Review blogs (nearly 30!) from My Theatre Mates colleagues in recent weeks. As an addendum, I’ve now rounded up critics’ round-ups in other publications.
This week the London theatre bloggers discuss Kenneth Branagh’s star-studded West End Romeo and Juliet, plus Blue/Orange revived at the Young Vic and the UK premiere of The Flick at the National.
We sit as if we are the cinema screen of a run-down fleapit in Massachusetts: we confront the back wall at projector window, and are occasionally dazzled by bright beams in the many blackouts. When showtime music ends, we face 100 empty seats between which two men languidly sweep up popcorn. That’s what we’re here for: to eavesdrop on these ordinary lives in their quiet desperations, desires and diversions, and monitor their interaction with Rose, the only woman: she is promoted to the projection box, lacing up the last 35mill non-digital projector in Worcester County
Looking ahead to this year’s highlights, from Broadway imports and Pulitzer prize winners to Kenneth Branagh and Matthew Warchus’s ongoing seasons.
The National Theatre has announced new production dates and casting updates for its next booking period, running from January to April 2016. Highlights include: Sharon D Clarke in the title role of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, directed by Dominic Cooke; Katie Mitchell’s revival of Sarah Kane’s 1998 play Cleansed; Lorraine Hansberry’s Les Blancs, directed by Yael Farber; a modern take on Nikolai Erdman’s The Suicide by Suhayla El-Bushra, directed by Nadia Fall; and the New York transfer of Annie Baker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play The Flick.