Posts Tagged ‘Lyndsey Turner’

Review – Light Shining in Buckinghamshire, National Theatre

Thursday 23 April 2015

Light_Shining_in_Buckinghamshire_poster_notitle_1We should have known better.

Andrew was keen to see Light Shining in Buckinghamshire, not for its obvious significance – that it heralds Rufus Norris’ takeover at the National Theatre – but because a) it’s about the English Civil War, b) features one of his favourite actresses, Amanda Lawrence and c) he thought it only fair to give playwright Caryl Churchill a second chance.

The thing is, he had completely forgotten he’d already given Ms Churchill a second chance. He could only remember “the one with the floating sofas” as he succinctly encapsulated Drunk Enough To Say I Love You?  Andrew had clearly expunged The Union’s Cloud Nine from his memory bank with no inconsiderable success. Read the rest of this entry »

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Review – Chimerica, AlmeidaTheatre

Tuesday 2 July 2013

NEW_Chimerica_MainPhil once stood in Tiananmen Square, not facing a tank obvs, but facing the body of Chairman Mao (or what’s said to be his body) in the Mao Mausoleum. He also played frisbee there (in the square that is, not the mausoleum, although it was certainly vast enough in to have flicked a bit of plastic around in front of the waxy-looking ‘body’).

7 years later the tanks that rolled in were stopped by an unknown man standing in front of them. He was captured on film in what was to become one of the most iconic images of the last century.

The gushing raves for Lucy Kirkwood‘s Chimerica (a co-production with Headlong) have ensured a sell-out at the Almeida (where it’s now in its last week), hardly surprising canny Sonia Friedman snapped it up for the West End where it’ll be at the Harold Pinter Theatre from August 6th.

Could this be the same Kirkwood who delivered the Whinger-unapproved Tinderbox 5 years ago when apparently she was already a year into writing this play? Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Double Feature 2, National Theatre

Friday 29 July 2011

Oh dear oh lor oh lummee.

But then, having got themselves into an unseemly and quite uncharacteristic tizzy of enthusiastic excitement over Double Feature 1 in the National Theatre‘s summer season of new plays, it could only really be downhill for the sequel.

Poor old Double Feature 2 – burdened with the thankless task of producing the theatrical equivalent of the notoriously difficult second album.

And of course it completely failed to live up to the first which will now be tarnished by the rubbishness of the second. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Double Feature 1, National Theatre

Thursday 21 July 2011

Well you could knock us down with feathers: dystopian futures, new writing, pop-up venues, theatre in the three-quarters-of-the-way-round, gritty realism and we came out grinning like cats that have had the cream – one of those all too rare “So THIS is why we go to the theatre!” moments.

Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Posh, Royal Court

Monday 10 May 2010

Just a quickie or we’ll never catch up: Laura Wade’s Posh at the Royal Court is about a group of implausibly over-privileged Oxford students with an implausibly universal disdain for poor people. They are all members of The Riot Club, an exclusive dining club which habitually destroys dining rooms but pays for the damage so that’s OK.

Posh has had lots of coverage because The Riot Club is based on the notorious Bullingdon Club whose alumni include David Cameron, George Osborne and, umm, according to Wikipedia, Daily Telegraph theatre critic Charles Spencer, a charge which sadly he refutes.

That everyone in this milieux should be so utterly horrid as portrayed here seems as implausible as Wade’s conclusion which is that the Hooray Henry who goes too far and kicks a publican half to death will be seen by the Tory party machine to be just the sort of chap they are looking for once they have got him off the charges and all the nonsense dies down.

Yet in spite of all this and in spite of the fact that much of the first act deals only with the club’s rules, traditions and prospective leadership, the combination of sparkling dialogue, a superbly cast, top-drawer ensemble (including WEW-approved David Dawson and Henry Hadden Paton) playing with utter conviction and fine direction from Lyndsey Turner transforms this slightly rickety play transformed into a theatrical delight.

Rating

Rating score 4-5 full-bodied