sat 23/03/2019

Theatre Reviews

Caroline, or Change, Playhouse Theatre review - Sharon D Clarke is superlative

Veronica Lee

With the politics of hate alive and well both sides of the Atlantic, this seems a good time to revive Tony Kushner and Jeanine Tesori's 2003 musical, which is set in Civil Rights-era Louisiana.

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The Box of Delights, Wilton's Music Hall review - captivating adaptation of John Masefield's darkly thrilling novel

Rachel Halliburton

If you’re looking for a Christmas with more pagan edge than saccharine cheer, where the wolves are howling and the mythological characters are steeped in the terror and mystery of winter’s long dark nights, then make haste to Wilton’s Music Hall.

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The Tell-Tale Heart, National Theatre review - bloody good fun as well as bloody

Matt Wolf

The Tell-Tale Heart may be the title of an 1843 short story by Edgar Allen Poe, but rest assured that Anthony Neilson's adaptation of it for the National contains this theatre maverick's signature...

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Aladdin, New Wimbledon Theatre review - enjoyable but underpowered

Veronica Lee

Paul Merton has a lot of strings to his bow – stand-up, improv artist, historian of silent-movie-era comedy, quiz-show panellist, to name a few – and now he adds pantomime dame to his CV. He has appeared in television pantos before, but this is his first live outing, as Widow Twankey in Aladdin.

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Epiphoni Consort, Reader, St Paul's Covent Garden review - historical drama with seasonal spirit

Bernard Hughes

Like a supermarket "Christmas Dinner" sandwich, cramming the delights of a full festive lunch into every bite, Epiphoni Consort’s The Christmas Truce was at once historical play, choral concert and carol service, and so wonderfully enjoyable I didn’t want it to end.

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The Convert, Young Vic review - Africa's electric cry for justice

aleks Sierz

Wow! First, the Black Panther team took cinema by storm; now, they have conquered theatre as well. Or, at least, two of them have. The Convert has been written by actor and playwright Danai Gurira (Okoye), and stars Letitia Wright (Shuri).

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The Cane, Royal Court review - hey teacher, leave them kids alone

aleks Sierz

Playwright Mark Ravenhill, who shot to fame in 1996 with his in-yer-face shocker Shopping and Fucking, has been more or less absent from our stages for about a decade. The last play of his that I saw at the Royal Court was the Cold-War fantasy Over There – that was in 2009.

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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Piccadilly Theatre review - back for a heart-tugging encore

Tim Cornwell

One emotional high point in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, the much-lauded Simon Stephens adaptation that is back in our midst once more, comes when the teenage Christopher Boone is floated in the air as part of his dream of being an astronaut.

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The Merry Wives of Windsor, RSC, Barbican review - panto Shakespeare

Tom Birchenough

For those of us who have never thought much before about links between pantomime and Shakespeare, Fiona Laird’s new Merry Wives offers a chance to see how the combination works.

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The Double Dealer, Orange Tree Theatre review - high spirits and low morals

Matt Wolf

It's been 40 years since The Double Dealer last had a major airing (indeed, perhaps any airing) in London, so on the basis of novelty value alone, the Orange Tree's end-of-year offering is worth our attention. But as always with Restoration comedy, Congreve's 1693 story of romantic skulduggery and misalliance poses a basic problem: how do you make sense of a byzantine plot characteristic of the genre?

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