sun 22/01/2017

National Theatre

The Best Plays in London

Buried Child, Trafalgar Studios ★★★★ Ed Harris gives a masterclass in Sam Shepard's gothic family drama. Until 18 FebCinderella, London Palladium ★★★★ Welcome return of pantomime to this iconic venue. Until 15 JanDead Funny, Vaudeville Theatre ★★★★...

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Love, National Theatre

For a play that ends with 15 minutes of breath-stopping, jaw-dropping theatre that is surely as powerful as anything the departing year has brought us, Alexander Zeldin’s Love has a challenging relationship to the concept of drama itself. For the...

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Hedda Gabler, National Theatre

Theatre conventions are a funny thing. Today, it’s actually quite difficult to see a modern classic dressed in the clothes and performed on the set of its specific historical period. It has to be in contemporary dress. And in a contemporary setting...

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Peter Pan, National Theatre

The cry "Let's pretend" must have been heard often when J M Barrie played with the Llewelyn Davies boys in Kensington Gardens or at Black Lake Cottage in Surrey. The five sons of Arthur and Sylvia, orphaned as children and adopted by Barrie, almost...

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This House, Garrick Theatre

This House arrives in the West End with magic timing - a comedy about the farcical horrors of being a government with a wafer-thin majority, frantically wheeling out dying, suicidal and breastfeeding MPs to vote, horsetrading with "odds and sods" to...

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10 Questions for Playwright James Graham

Coalitions make for drama, and for comedy. We know that from, respectively, Borgen and the final series of The Thick of It. It is little wonder therefore that soon after the 2010 election delivered a hung Parliament, the National Theatre...

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Amadeus, National Theatre

Populist playwright Peter Shaffer, who died in June, gets a rapid honour from this flagship venue, which – aptly enough – is putting on his most popular play. So popular in fact that it has already sold out and is therefore critic-proof. Directed by...

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A Pacifist's Guide to the War on Cancer, National Theatre

Some have responded to the very notion of a musical about cancer as if the idea itself were breaking some unwritten code of what is permissible to put on stage – which seems a bit rich given that the same genre has accommodated pieces about AIDS (...

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The Red Barn, National Theatre

At first, I was a bit confused by the play’s title. After all, David Hare gave his 1998 adaptation of Arthur Schnitzler’s La Ronde the moniker of The Blue Room, which coincidentally is the same title as Mathieu Amalric’s very recent adaptation of a...

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Young Chekhov, National Theatre

"Yes, from life," Nikolai Ivanov (Geoffrey Streatfeild) says in passing of a painting midway through the early Chekhov play that bears his name. But the phrase could serve as the abiding achievement of the largely thrilling triptych of plays that...

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The Deep Blue Sea, National Theatre

From being the Aunt Sally of contemporary British theatre, attacked by the angry young men in the 1950s and the new wave of social and political realists for three decades after that, playwright Terence Rattigan is now well and truly rehabilitated....

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The Threepenny Opera, National Theatre

Last seen at the National Theatre over 10 years ago, Brecht and Weill’s The Threepenny Opera is back in a new adaptation by Simon Stephens. But looking at Rufus Norris’s epic-theatre-lite production – all exposed stage-mechanics and makeshift sets...

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