Watching The Merry Wives of Windsor at Grosvenor Park open air theatre in Chester the other evening, I wondered why this Shakespeare comedy is so rarely performed. As always, the Grosvenor company put on a terrific show – fast-paced, multi-sensory, and packed with music and comedy. We couldn’t have asked for a more entertaining three … Continue reading The Merry Wives of Windsor in Chester’s Grosvenor Park: a touch of the 1970s
The drizzle, it seemed, was determined to droppeth as the rain from heaven for some time, but heaven’s mercy prevailed to allow for a mainly dry performance of Romeo and Juliet by a wandering troupe from the Globe Theatre in Calderstones Park. Still, nothing – least of all a bit of rain – comes in … Continue reading Romeo and Juliet in Calderstones Park: teenage hysteria
I have never longed so much for the moment I could leave the theatre as when watching the Royal Exchange production of Caryl Churchill’s 1994 drama, The Skriker, that really should have been left un-revived rather than being the centrepiece of the 2015 Manchester International Festival. The production has attracted uniformly adulatory reviews, and it … Continue reading The Skriker: A midsummer nightmare
The weight of this sad time we must obey; Speak what we feel, not what we ought to say. The oldest hath borne most: we that are young Shall never see so much, nor live so long. Jonathan Miller’s touring production of King Lear for Northern Broadsides arrived at the Playhouse this week. It’s a stark, … Continue reading Northern accents in Jonathan Miller’s King Lear
There’s a darkness on the edge of town. A place of misrule and disruptive magic that in Shakespeare’s day incited dark fears and dreams of wild abandon. The Everyman production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, seen on the penultimate night of its successful run, helped me appreciate for the first time the darker side of Shakespeare’s … Continue reading A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Everyman: darkness on the edge of town
To forget the dead would be akin to killing them a second time. ― Elie Wiesel, Night Human suffering anywhere concerns men and women everywhere. ― Elie Wiesel, Night Two very different representations of the Holocaust seen in the last 48 hours are the subject of this post. The first is the stage adaptation by Children’s Touring … Continue reading Representations of the Holocaust: stage, screen and text
A revival of David Hare’s 1993 play, The Absence of War, seemed an enticing prospect. A drama portraying the Labour Party as lost in ideological confusion, drained of vitality, and unable to mobilise public support or present a vision or values in any compelling way promised to be highly relevant in present circumstances. But at the Liverpool Playhouse the other night I … Continue reading The Absence of War: parliamentary socialism, anybody?