tue 12/11/2019

religion

God's Dice, Soho Theatre review - overlong and overblown

David Baddiel is a very fine comic, and over the past few years has become an acclaimed author of children's books. So I'm genuinely sad to say that his debut play at Soho Theatre really isn't very good. God's Dice does have its moments, for sure,...

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By the Grace of God review - a dark, meticulous drama from François Ozon

This is a departure in every sense for François Ozon. The prolific French director has established himself as a master of ludic style in past dramas played out by predominantly female casts, the exceptions, among them his sad black-and-white period...

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Verdi Requiem, LPO, Gardner, RFH review – beyond the big noise

You seldom expect to feel the breath of apocalypse and the terror of the grave amid the modestly rationalist architecture and passion-killer acoustics of the Royal Festival Hall. In fact, before Edward Gardner and the London Philharmonic Orchestra...

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Our Lady of Kibeho, Theatre Royal Stratford East review - heaven and hell in Rwandan visions

The American dramatist Katori Hall has created a work of rare accomplishment in Our Lady of Kibeho, a play that combines a beautifully established picture of a particular world – a church school in rural Rwanda, in the early 1980s – with profound...

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Hail Satan? review - the detail of the devil

As Penny Lane’s documentary shows, America and Satanism have a long history. From the Salem Witch trials to the moral panic triggered by the Manson murders and films like William Friedkin’s The Exorcist in the 1970s, mass panic in America of the...

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Jesus Christ Superstar, Barbican review - Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical lives again

Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s 1970 musical had a heavenly resurrection at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre three years ago, with an encore run the following summer. It’s soon heading off on a US tour, but first there’s another chance for...

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Mike Jay: Mescaline - A Global History of the First Psychedelic review - multiple perspectives

Humans have been consuming mescaline for millennia. The hallucinogenic alkaloid occurs naturally in a variety of cacti native to South America and the southern United States, the most well known of which are the diminutive peyote and the...

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theartsdesk Q&A: playwright William Nicholson

It is 30 years since Shadowlands, William Nicholson's much-loved play about CS Lewis's unexpected love affair with Joy Gresham, an American poet, was first seen on stage. The famous academic and author of the Narnia books, apparently content in his...

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Brockes-Passion, AAM, Egarr, Barbican review - fleshly Handel for our earthbound times

Whips, scourges, sinews, blood and pus: where Bach’s two Passions lament from a contemplative distance, Handel’s plunges right to the bone, to the cruel, tortured death that is the heart of the Easter story.Perhaps that explains the work’s recent...

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Fleabag, Series 2 finale, BBC Three review - Phoebe Waller-Bridge's miraculous situation tragedy

The problem with Fleabag (BBC Three/BBC One) is that it makes almost all television look pedestrian. It’s like the difference between Fleabag’s scummily inadequate boyfriends and the unattainable perfection embodied by the cool sweary priest. Earth...

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Pah-La, Royal Court review - complex ideas, wild storytelling

Theatre can give a voice to the voiceless – but at what cost? Abhishek Majumdar, who debuted at the Royal Court in 2013 with The Djinns of Eidgah – about the situation in Kashmir – returns with his latest play, Pah-La. Just as his debut was...

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The Crucible, The Yard Theatre review - wilfully over-stirred

The Crucible is a play that speaks with unrelenting power at times of discord, most of all when the public consciousness looks ripe for manipulation. Never more appropriate than now, you might think – and in a year in which the work of Arthur Miller...

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