Tag Archives: the arts desk

Bugsy Malone, Lyric Hammersmith

For those in sore need of a theatrical pick-me-up, jazz square your way over to Bugsy Malone. Last year’s smash-hit opener of the redeveloped Lyric has been given a well-deserved encore, with Sean Holmes’s production once again nailing the beguiling … Continue reading

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Opinion: Post-Brexit, we need theatre more than ever

In seeking to understand the historic, divisive and to some bewildering Brexit vote, I will turn to theatre. Through my regular exposure to it, I can number among my ever-widening acquaintance a young king, a whistleblower, a minimum-wage movie usher, … Continue reading

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Macbeth, Shakespeare’s Globe

It begins promisingly, a dark Gothic fairy tale – both Grimm and grim. The writhing witches (four, oddly) are summoned from a pile of dead bodies, Stefan Fichert’s eerie puppetry all chopped-up limbs and interchanging demonic heads, hands scuttling across … Continue reading

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Henry V, Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre

As we finally go to the polls, casting votes based on our view of national identity and Britain’s place in the world, here comes Shakespeare’s ever-topical play. Robert Hastie’s thoughtful take is contemporary dress but stripped back, not so much … Continue reading

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Wild, Hampstead Theatre

Who do you trust? The EU Referendum campaign has exposed a mounting suspicion of the establishment, from financial institutions to press and politicians, and our sense of nationhood has never been murkier. But if we cease to believe in anything, … Continue reading

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The Quiet House, Park Theatre

Infertility affects one in six couples, but it’s still something of a taboo subject. Gareth Farr’s new play throws welcome light on the challenges of conception, and is accompanied by a Fertility Fest that brings together artists and medical experts … Continue reading

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The Spoils, Trafalgar Studios

“The most interesting characters are initially difficult to like,” proclaims Jesse Eisenberg’s would-be filmmaker protagonist, in case his cringe comedy’s mission statement was otherwise unclear. Ben is an outlandish collage of unlikeable qualities: abusive, misanthropic, arrogant, vicious, self-loathing, needy, and … Continue reading

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Sideways, St James Theatre

Alexander Payne’s adored 2004 film adaptation of Rex Pickett’s semi-autobiographical novel didn’t just pick up an Academy Award – it led to a plummeting in sales of Merlot and Pinot Noir becoming the drink of choice. What might Pickett’s theatrical … Continue reading

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Romeo and Juliet, Garrick Theatre

Trouble remembering in which country Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers cross paths? Branagh’s panting paean to Fellini will sort you out. Stylish as a monochromatic Vogue spread, and as self-consciously Italian as Bruno Tonioli guzzling lasagne in a gondola, it’s not exactly … Continue reading

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The Philanderer, Orange Tree Theatre

Gender deconstruction, fraught feminism and the perils of hook-up culture: George Bernard Shaw’s comedy of manners, penned in 1893, shows we haven’t come as far as we might think. It’s a point rammed home by Paul Miller’s choice of modern … Continue reading

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