The trafficking of human beings – 7,000 identified in the UK in 2018 – is a disgusting blight on our country. The fledgling playwright Eugene O’Hare is among many earnest contemporary writers (working in theatre, film and stage) seeking to shine a light on the problem.
This production of Pictures of Dorian Gray at Jermyn Street Theatre is intriguing, and offers chances to see the parts played differently, but there are inevitable losses.
When I left I thought I was disappointed in The Starry Messenger, but this morning I can’t help thinking about Matthew Broderick’s character Mark, and his wife, and the sadness of all our middle years as they shade towards nightfall..
Hopes for The Last Temptation of Boris Johnson couldn’t be higher: it is again built around truth – a 2016 dinner party where Boris and Marina Johnson entertained the Goves and Yevgeny Lebedev, starstruck owner of the London Standard.
I wanted to be more engaged with the fierce fin-de siecle political play that is Ibsen’s Rosmersholm, but Rosmer got in the way.
The artistic love affair between August Strindberg’s ghost, playwright Howard Brenton and director Tom Littler continues to bear strange fruit in Creditors at the Jermyn Street Theatre.
So how nicely appropriate of Katharine Farmer and Blue Touch Paper Productions to open this 1989 play, Other People’s Money by Jerry Sterner, on the very day we learned that President Trump gets a State Visit this summer.
After the interval, The Three Sisters, mercifully, in mood and pace, could be a different play. I left happy enough. But goodness, the first scenes badly need more vigour. And a trim.
You can’t fault the atmosphere: Jasmine Swan’s set takes you straight to the wide skies and muddy, reedy mystery of Breydon Water, where the Norfolk and Suffolk Broadland rivers meet and strange old structures rot quietly into history.
Mary Barton and her husband Berthold Wiesner ran a pioneering fertility clinic: they were among the first to offer, with full anonymity, artificial insemination by donor for couples they thought were “good stock”.
So what we have here in Remains of the Day is a masterclass in acting, deft in direction and a rightful meditation on an England that so nearly went into the dark. But still, for all that, more of a novel than a play.
Ideological hostilities across the world, fake news and paranoia, a resurgent deep left, uneasy relations with Russia, antisemites questioning the patriotism of Jews: no bad time to revive James Phillips’ powerful play The Rubenstein Kiss.
Can we, I wonder, ever learn to deplore past attitudes without being vengeful about it? The Cane is a mischievously satirical – and unsettling – imagination by Mark Ravenhill.
As a gross-out gigglefest sweeps London theatre, The Tell-Tale Heart – Anthony Neilson’s knowingly gothic take on Edgar Allen Poe’s famous first-person narrative – arrives at the NT’s Dorfman Theatre.
As the two brothers battle over a script that could make them their fortune – True West becomes a play that is really about the writer, the late Sam Shepard.
Musically, The Simon & Garfunkel Story is a treat, from the opening growl of ‘The Sound of Silence’, through the gentle folksy love songs, to the complex harmonies and crypto-prophetic lyrics developing through the ‘Bookends’ and ‘Bridge’ albums.
Emma Rice’s new residency with The Old Vic opens with her adaptation of the book Wise Children and shares its name with the new company she has founded after the wounding debacle downriver at the Globe.
It’s a sign of the sparky credibility of Nina Raine’s play about a woman desperate for a sperm donor – having broken with her younger, unwilling boyfriend – that half an hour in I started thinking “aren’t women hell!” But later that changes to “actually, it’s theatricals and intellectual creatives who are hell”. It is all very NW3.
This time David Hare’s main theme in his new play I’m Not Running is the difference between campaigners who become treasured heroes on limited issues – especially the NHS, which pushes everyone’s button – and pragmatic machine-politicians in government or opposition.
The Collection (and The Lover) still feel incredibly modern in their case-study observations on infidelity and subterfuge, even though none of the indiscretions seem particularly radical by today’s standards.