The National Theatre’s 2016 production of Les Blancs was directed by Yaël Farber and used the full resources of the Olivier stage to transmit its full force.
I’ve always found Antony and Cleopatra a bit of a slog. There, I’ve said it. Too many scenes which flit about all over the place, too many minor inconsequential characters, deaths which seem interminable.
Antony & Cleopatra, clocking in at three hours and 30 minutes, is a tale of two halves (you really do only get one interval).
Or Cleopatra and Antony as it turns out. Ralph Fiennes is plenty good in Simon Godwin’s modern-dress production of Antony & Cleopatra for the National Theatre, but Sophie Okonedo is sit-up, shut-up, stand-up amazing.
After a genuinely exhilarating Julius Caesar at the Bridge Theatre a few months ago, Shakespeare’s subsequent tale Antony and Cleopatra has arrived at the National starring Ralph Fiennes and Sophie Okonedo.
Antony & Cleopatra can be a bit of an ordeal. The last RSC one was. So I am happy to say that this time, and in the trickily vast Olivier, director Simon Godwin has absolutely pulled it off .
Whoever decided to revive Chayefsky’s film via a stage production made an astute choice. Network could hardly be more topical or timely in an era that has become infamous for false truths, ‘fake news’ and where ideas have become truncated and traduced by social media.
A satire that managed to predict just how powerful a tool populist anger can be when leveraged effectively, it is transformed into the immersive bustle of a TV studio, that of UBS Evening News where old hack Howard Beale – a transcendent performance by Bryan Cranston – has been handed his notice.
Network is enthralling, interpreting a strange story in a slick, fast-moving production that manages to reveal the media’s rather shallow relationship with truth and makes profound statements about the concept of collective action, all the while being true to its original movie roots.
This autumn the National Theatre stages the world-premiere of Network, Lee Hall’s new adaptation of the Oscar-winning film by Paddy Chayefsky.
Directed by Ivo van Hove, the cast includes Bryan Cranston as Howard Beale, Michelle Dockery as Diana Christenson and Douglas Henshall as Max Schumaker.
McCraney is now an Oscar-winning writer after the phenomenal success of Moonlight (based on one of his unproduced plays) and RuPaul has dragged drag into the mainstream
The play centres around the house ball culture mostly based in the US, and takes place over the course of 24 hours. We follow the journey of the House of Light *snaps* as they get ready for a ball thrown by their rivals, House of Diabolique.