Tag Archives: second world war

Absolute Hell, National Theatre

The original version of Rodney Ackland’s provocative work, The Pink Room, had a bruising reception back in 1952, losing thousands for investor Terence Rattigan amidst furious reviews. Since salvaged by the Orange Tree in the Eighties, its rebirth was cemented by … Continue reading

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The Slaves of Solitude, Hampstead Theatre

We’re back in the world of ration books, blackouts and spam fritters, as Nicholas Wright delves into the home front via his adaptation of Patrick Hamilton’s 1947 novel. Though there’s a certain period chintz about Jonathan Kent’s production, darker undercurrents make this a more … Continue reading

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BWW Interview: Fenella Woolgar

The actress discusses The Slaves of Solitude, the stage adaptation of Patrick Hamilton’s novel, at Hampstead Theatre. Read my full BroadwayWorld interview here

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Love in Idleness, Menier Chocolate Factory

In 1944, Terence Rattigan substantially revised Less Than Kind at the behest of star theatrical couple the Lunts; the result was the less political, more overtly comic play Love in Idleness. Now, Trevor Nunn, inspired by Dan Rebellato’s introduction in … Continue reading

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The Patriotic Traitor, Park Theatre

Theatregoers suffering from First World War fatigue may want to pass on Jonathan Lynn’s merely competent historical drama about two mythic figures: Charles de Gaulle and Philippe Pétain. It’s a fascinating subject – de Gaulle had his former mentor tried … Continue reading

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Mrs Henderson Presents, Noël Coward Theatre

War bad, theatre good. That’s about the level of insight available from this amiable show, transferring after a successful run in Bath. It’s one of the weaker entries in the ever-popular backstage genre, sharing Vaudevillian DNA with Gypsy and a … Continue reading

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Moderate Soprano is a moderate success

Following Farinelli and the King, here’s another gently aimless drama about opera and – more circuitously – the inestimable value of art. David Hare takes us back to 1934 and the birth of Glyndebourne, with Rae Smith’s design illustrating its … Continue reading

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When We Were Women, Orange Tree Theatre

Can you peg a whole play on a decent twist? When We Were Women’s narrative tease pays off interestingly, but takes a hell of a long time getting there. It leaves little space to explore the ramifications of an intriguing … Continue reading

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Harvey, Theatre Royal Haymarket

If insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results, repeatedly unfunny Harvey isn’t just a study of madness, but a punishing example of it. Mary Chase’s dusty 1944 farce about a man hallucinating a 6ft 3in rabbit … Continue reading

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Solid Miller is lacking darkness

‘It’s gonna rain tonight,’ predicts All My Sons protagonist Joe Keller. As one, the Regent’s Park audience turned their gaze to a threatening sky. Thankfully, we were spared a deluge, but it highlighted a problem with this venue. Arthur Miller’s masterful study of corrosive … Continue reading

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