thu 01/12/2022

Theatre Features

Theatre Unlocked 1: George Floyd remembered, a classic transformed, and a call to action re climate change

Matt Wolf

We're easing out of lockdown, haircuts are being had, and the theatre continually shape-shifts to accommodate these changing times. All credit to the 14 writers who have conjoined forces in urgency and haste to create 846, a collection of audio plays responding to the murder of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement.

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Theatre Lockdown Special 13: Early Lloyd Webber, vintage Rattigan, and a Dame or two in conversation

Matt Wolf

Stop the presses! For the first time in nearly four months, The Arts Desk can point to the first of several live theatre events amongst the highlights of the coming week: the tour across the nation's car parks to multiple drive-in audiences of Horrible Histories: Barmy Britain, a previous West End mainstay that has adapted with these strange times.

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Theatre Lockdown Special 12: An American rarity, a British savoury, and fresh Apples

Matt Wolf

Can this weekly lineup really now be three months old?  As we move towards at least some degree of relaxation on the social restrictions that have long been in place, the offerings of theatre online continue to afford many a reason not to leave your laptop.

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Theatre Lockdown Special 11: Shakespeare-as-rave, a starlit Old Vic, and, yes, those singing nuns

Matt Wolf

Might we be nearing light at the end of the lockdown tunnel? It definitely seems that way, with the news in recent days that social life beyond the home may be resuming soon, at least after a fashion. All the while, theatrical offerings continue to come thick and fast, all the while offering up a cheeringly broad away of online prospects.

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Ian Holm, British film's best supporting actor

Jasper Rees

Ian Holm was once in his local cinema on High Street Kensington, enquiring at the ticket office about concessions for people who appeared in the film they wished to see. The unlucky vendor failed to make the connection between the short customer with full beard and the clean-shaven priest in the sci-fi caper showing on Screen Four upstairs. He had to make an internal call to the manager. "There's someone here who says he's in The Fifth Element. Wants a discount." "Oh yeah.

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Theatre Lockdown Special 10: Epic plays from the National Theatre and Broadway alongside voices raised in protest

Matt Wolf

As lockdown continues, National Theatre at Home has announced its final sequence of plays, and several of the very best are being saved for last. That certainly applies to this week's offering, Small Island, whose dissection of Britain's racist past couldn't be timelier.

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Theatre Lockdown Special 9: Alan Bennett revisited, and so is Oz

Matt Wolf

The government may occupy shifting sands when it comes to handling Covid-19, but the arts thank heavens continue to step up to the plate with a dizzying array of online options.

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Theatre Lockdown Special 8: A film star plays tough, and several familiar titles are examined anew

Matt Wolf

As we continue into a third month in lockdown, the arts continue to suggest ever-changing worlds beyond. The invaluable National Theatre at Home this week looks across the Thames to a smaller venue's large-scale Coriolanus, starring a certain superhero movie icon, whilst the equally cherished Graeae streams their lively musical theatre tribute to the late Ian Dury.

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Theatre Lockdown Special 7: Party politics and a Broadway titan or two

Matt Wolf

The live-ness of theatre seems further away with every passing week, but at least the art form itself lives on to tantalise and entertain, whetting the appetite until such day as we are sharing an auditorium once again. National Theatre at Home continues to lead from the front with a tantalising array of offerings, this week bringing to the fore the busy James Graham in his comparative creative infancy with This House.

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Larry Kramer: 'I think anger is a wonderful useful emotion'

Jasper Rees

Larry Kramer, who has died at the age of 84, was the Solzhenitsyn of AIDS who indomitably reported from the gay gulags of Manhattan’s quarantined wards and revolving-door hospices. “I felt very much like a journalist who realises that he has been given the story of his life,” he told me when I met him.

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Advertising feature

★★★★★

A compulsive, involving, emotionally stirring evening – theatre’s answer to a page-turner.
The Observer, Kate Kellaway

 

Direct from a sold-out season at Kiln Theatre the five star, hit play, The Son, is now playing at the Duke of York’s Theatre for a strictly limited season.

 

★★★★★

This final part of Florian Zeller’s trilogy is the most powerful of all.
The Times, Ann Treneman

 

Written by the internationally acclaimed Florian Zeller (The Father, The Mother), lauded by The Guardian as ‘the most exciting playwright of our time’, The Son is directed by the award-winning Michael Longhurst.

 

Book by 30 September and get tickets from £15*
with no booking fee.


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