sat 23/03/2019

Theatre Reviews

Tartuffe, National Theatre review - morality-heavy version of the comedy classic

Heather Neill

Here's a recipe for a successful National Theatre production: take a well-loved classical comedy, employ an outstanding young director and a talented writer (so much the better if they have a proven track record together) and cast gold-standard actors, including, if possible, someone with a screen presence. What could possibly go wrong?

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Shipwreck, Almeida Theatre review - Trump-inflected fantasia mixes the polemical and the poetic

Matt Wolf

Just when you think you may have heard (and seen) enough of Donald J Trump to last a lifetime, along comes Anne Washburn's ceaselessly smart and tantalising Shipwreck to focus renewed attention on the psychic fallout left by 45. How did we get here from there?

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Keith? A Comedy, Arcola Theatre review - Molière mined for Brexit-era laughs

Tim Cornwell

Breathe in the love and breathe out the bullshit. After the Arcola Theatre's founder and artistic director Mehmet Ergen read Keith?

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Bodies, Southwark Playhouse review - shaky revival misses the mark

Laura De Lisle

Bodies is the latest in Two's Company's series of what they deem "forgotten masterworks", this one making a less-than-triumphant return to the London stage after almost 40 years away. Written by James Saunders in 1977, it opened at the Orange Tree in Richmond before transferring to the Hampstead Theatre and then on to the West End.

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Only Fools and Horses, Theatre Royal Haymarket review - rollicking remake of much-loved TV sitcom

Adam Sweeting

It was TV gold-dust. The original seven series of Only Fools and Horses were broadcast on BBC One from 1981-1991, and a string of Christmas specials kept the show running until 2003. It was showered with awards and critical acclaim, and in 1996 the episode "Time on Our Hands" drew a record-breaking 24.3 million viewers.

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All in a Row, Southwark Playhouse, review - soapy and shrill pity party

Saskia Baron

Time once again to roll out that line about the road to hell being paved with good intentions.

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Cyprus Avenue, Royal Court Theatre review - Stephen Rea is utterly compelling

Veronica Lee

David Ireland is a playwright who likes to jolt his audience and Cyprus Avenue, a dark absurdist comedy about an Ulster unionist afraid of losing his identity, does just that.

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Gently Down the Stream, Park Theatre review - gay history sifted for compact drama

David Nice

Ripeness is sometimes all.

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Come From Away, Phoenix Theatre review - a necessary corrective to our traumatic times

Matt Wolf

Against the grimmest of backdrops, generosity and even grace can be possible.

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Agnes Colander, Jermyn Street Theatre review - Naomi Frederick shines in 'new' Granville Barker

Heather Neill

Remembering meeting Harley Granville Barker when casting him as Marchbanks in Candida, Shaw described the 23-year-old as, "altogether the most distinguished and incomparably the most cultivated person whom circumstances had driven into the theatre at that time." He judged his performance as the romantic poet "perfect".

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