thu 18/07/2019

England

Eugene Onegin/Georgiana, Buxton Festival review - poetry and pantomime

It’s the saddest music in the world: the quiet heartbeat and falling melody with which Tchaikovsky opens his opera Eugene Onegin. Imagine a whole society, a whole lifetime of solitude, longing and disillusion, evoked in a single bass note and a few...

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Charles I: Downfall of a King, BBC Four review - beheaded monarch upstaged by exotic presenter

“I want to discover how our government could fall apart and the country become bitterly divided in just a few weeks,” historian Lisa Hilton announced at the start of her BBC Four account of the traumatic demise of Charles I. In a mere 50 days in...

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The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13-3/4, Ambassadors Theatre review - needs a chill pill

Time hasn't necessarily been kind to this slow-aborning West End transfer of a show first seen (and lauded) in its 2015 debut in Leicester and then again two years later for a summer run at the Menier Chocolate Factory. The Secret Diary of Adrian...

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The Turn of the Screw, Garsington Opera review - superb music drama on an open stage

The famous ambiguity of Henry James's The Turn of the Screw is whether the ghosts that take possession of the two children are real or merely figments of the young Governess’s imagination. Britten’s opera resolves this unequivocally in favour of...

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Inside the Ritz Hotel, ITV review - glitz and glam, but no detail

Should the Ritz catch up with modernity? This question is posed and immediately answered with another question: Does it need to? Not really, say the staff, clients and celebrity guests that populate this bubbly, formulaic and unashamed celebration...

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the end of history ..., Royal Court review - raises more questions than it answers

An apocalyptic title proves somewhat of a red herring for a slight if intriguing play that returns the dream team behind Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to their erstwhile stomping ground at the Royal Court. Set across 20 years in the Newbury...

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First Person: Damian Cruden on reinvigorating the Bard away from London with Shakespeare's Rose

How we deliver culture in the modern day is complex. There are many misconceptions about where and who is capable of leading the nation’s cultural charge. The accepted conceit is that if culture doesn’t emanate from certain places, like London or...

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Present Laughter, Old Vic review - Andrew Scott continues his rise and rise

"Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?" can be heard pulsating through the Old Vic auditorium as the curtain rises on its wondrous revival of Present Laughter: a decisive feather in the cap of artistic director Matthew Warchus's regime. But all Garry...

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Cutting Edge: Modernist British Printmaking, Dulwich Picture Gallery review - a cut above

Under a turbulent sky racked with jagged clouds suggesting bolts of lightning, pale figures hurl themselves into a spitting expanse of water. Swathed in white towels, other figures mingle with the pink bodies, seeming to process along the pier as if...

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While the Sun Shines, Orange Tree Theatre review - frothy, yes, up to a point

Terence Rattigan completists, and count myself among them, will leap at the chance to see a rare production courtesy the Orange Tree Theatre of While the Sun Shines, a 1943 monster hit for this great English writer that has languished in semi-...

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Wild Bill, Episode 1, ITV review - an American in Lincolnshire

All is not well in Boston, Lincolnshire. Unemployment, immigration concerns, Brexit frustration, and the highest murder rate in the country. How do you solve the problems of contemporary Britain? Send in an American. And not just that. Bill Hixon (...

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Porgy and Bess, Grange Park Opera review - good versus evil in Catfish Row

If you go to a British country house opera to see a work about an addict and a cripple in a poverty-stricken Deep South tenement, you know the contrast between stage and garden marquee will be extreme. Seeing Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess at Grange...

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