sun 20/08/2017

National Theatre

The Majority, National Theatre review – a minority interest

A new plague is sweeping British theatre: audience participation. Instead of just sitting back and enjoying the show, your visit to a venue is now likely to involve voting on the guilt or innocence of terror suspects (as in Terror or Blurred Justice...

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The Best Plays in London

London is the theatre capital of the world, with more than 50 playhouses offering theatrical entertainment. From the mighty National Theatre to the West End, the small powerhouses of the Donmar Warehouse and the Almeida and out to the fringe...

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Mosquitoes, National Theatre review - Olivias Colman and Williams dazzle amid dramatic excess

There's enough plot for a dozen plays buzzing its way through Mosquitoes, Lucy Kirkwood's play that uses the backdrop of the Large Hadron Collidor (LHC) to chronicle the multiple collisions within a family. Veering off now and then into discussion...

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Olivia Williams interview: 'Are you on drugs?' 'No I've just spent the day acting'

Olivia Williams’s first film was, (in)famously, seen by almost no one. The Postman, Kevin Costner’s expensive futuristic misfire, may have summoned her from the depths of chronic unemployment, but the first time anyone actually clapped eyes on her...

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Barber Shop Chronicles, National Theatre review - foot-stompingly pleasurable

The strapline for this joyful show is: “One day; six cities; a thousand stories.” Allowing for hyperbole, this is just about right. Performance poet Inua Ellams’s new show is set in a handful of cities that stretch across one part of the globe, from...

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Common, National Theatre review - Anne-Marie Duff fails to ignite

History is a tricky harlot. She is bought and sold, fought for and thrown over, seduced and betrayed – and always at the mercy of the winners. In a general election week, it is hard to deny that still now we are the progeny of the possessive...

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Salomé, National Theatre review - Yaël Farber’s version is verbose and overblown

Is God female? It says a lot about Yaël Farber’s pompous and overblown new version of this biblical tale at the National Theatre that, near the end of an almighty 110-minute extravaganza, all reason seemed to have vacated my brain, and its empty...

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10 Questions for sound designer Adam Cork

No one ever went to the theatre for the sound design. Indeed, only the nerdiest theatregoers could name a single practitioner of the art. But imagine attending a production by Katie Mitchell or Robert Icke or Ivo van Hove – or any less overtly...

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Angels in America, National Theatre review - Andrew Garfield and company soar in seismic revival

"We live past hope," or so remarks the AIDS-afflicted drag queen-turned-prophet, Prior Walter (Andrew Garfield), late in Angels in America. But surely not even Tony Kushner, author of the eight-hour theatrical landmark that some while ago entered...

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Sunday Book: Nicholas Hytner - Balancing Acts

After the first preview of Mike Leigh’s play Two Thousand Years at the National Theatre, a young Guardian reporter accosted an audience member for his view of the play. The audience member gave his name as Nigel Shapps, his...

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Consent, National Theatre, review - thrilling revenge drama

Rape is such a serious social issue that it’s hardly surprising that several recent plays have tackled it. I’m thinking of Gary Owen’s Violence and Son, James Fritz’s Four Minutes Twelve Seconds and Evan Placey’s Consensual. All of these discuss,...

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Anna Maxwell Martin: 'I like playing baddies' - interview

She was Lyra in Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials at the National, she has shared the stage with Eileen Atkins (in Honour and The Female of the Species), played Isabella in Measure for Measure, Regan in King Lear and Sally Bowles in Cabaret. She...

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