mon 04/03/2024

Theatre Reviews

Talking About the Fire, Royal Court review - urgent and informative

aleks Sierz

Let’s start with what we know: the climate emergency is the single most burning question facing the planet. Our life on earth depends on tackling it. Right? Well, maybe not, argues theatre-maker Chris Thorpe in his new one-man show, Talking About the Fire, currently enjoying a short run at the Royal Court theatre.

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The Homecoming, Young Vic Theatre review - Pinter's disturbing masterpiece is given a low-key revival

Heather Neill

As the audience enters, thick mist envelopes the thrust stage and jazz music fills the theatre. The set, designed by Moi Tran, consists of a sparsely furnished but spacious room, backed by a staircase. It is a place in the past but also anywhere and any time, both naturalistic and imaginary.

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Dreaming and Drowning, Bush Theatre - dense and intense monologue about Black queer identity

Helen Hawkins

Kwame Owusu’s 55-minute one-hander does just what it says on the tin: it features a young student who dreams he is drowning. But its brevity is no bar to its being a dense and intense experience, worthy winner of last year’s Mustapha Matura Award.

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Infinite Life, National Theatre review - beguiling new comedy about a world of pain

Helen Hawkins

A sun deck with seven pale-green padded loungers is the latest setting for the latest National Theatre premiere from American playwright Annie Baker to people in her inimitable way. In her hands this banal space is as dramatically charged as any windowless Beckett cell. 

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£1 Thursdays, Finborough Theatre review - dazzling new play is as funny and smart as its two heroines

Gary Naylor

It’s 2012 and the London Olympics might as well be happening on the Moon for Jen and Stacey. In fact, you could say the same for everyone else scrabbling a living in Bradford – or anywhere north of Watford – and we know what those left-behind places did when presented with a ballot box in 2016 and 2019.

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A Sherlock Carol, Marylebone Theatre review - merry, but mirthless

aleks Sierz

It’s an elementary fact that Dickens sells at this time of year — look at all the perennial Christmas Carols sprouting up everywhere. But if grumpy old Scrouge is an instantly recognizable literary icon then so is the super sleuth Sherlock Holmes.

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Macbeth, The Depot, Liverpool review - Ralph Fiennes leads a conventional production in an unconventional space

Gary Naylor

Next door to the beautiful Art Deco Littlewoods Pools Building, nearly 30 years standing derelict, a set of grey sheds stand, a seat of potential for Liverpool’s nascent film industry. Nearly a century ago, the long, white, towered construction in which the next "Spend! Spend!

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Peter Pan Goes Wrong, Lyric Theatre review - adult panto delivered as jolly chaos

Helen Hawkins

Mischief Theatre set themselves a big challenge when they evolved their brand of knowing slapstick. And not just about how to destroy the scenery without maiming themselves.

More crucially, they have to pull off the Janus-faced trick of playing the amateur actors of the Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society, indicated below in quotation marks, while getting the audience to applaud their brilliance. Mostly they succeed.

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The House of Bernarda Alba, Lyttelton Theatre review - dazzling darkness

Demetrios Matheou

Rebecca Frecknall opened 2023 with a youthful, visceral, and brutal Streetcar Named Desire at the Almeida; she ends it with another startlingly vigorous adaptation, again of a play in which women are abused by men both physically and psychologically.

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Odyssey: A Heroic Pantomime, Charles Court Opera, Jermyn Street Theatre review - topsy-turvy Homer

David Nice

This is the show that launched a thousand puns, mostly ancient-Greek-oriented, and just as many corny rhymes, all delivered with high energy and greeted with joyful groans. To say it’s no epic is a compliment: Charles Court Opera’s boutique pantos rely upon perfect focus in small spaces, and this is a tight little craft, with five brilliant women firing up director/writer John Savournin’s script and David Eaton’s musical arrangements.

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Pages

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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