fri 24/05/2024

17th century

Richard, My Richard, Theatre Royal Bury St Edmund's review - too much history, not enough drama

History is very present in Philippa Gregory’s new play about Richard III. Literally - History is a character, played by Tom Kanji. He strides around in a pale trenchcoat, at first rather too glib and pleased with himself, but quickly sucked into the...

Read more...

Marwood, Power, Watkins, Hallé, Adès, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester review - sonic adventure and luxuriance

For the second big concert of his “residency” with the Hallé this season, Thomas Adès chose one major piece of his own, rather than a set of shorter ones. Tevot, a 21-minute one-movement work written for the Berlin Philharmonic 18 years ago,...

Read more...

Cargill, Kantos Chamber Choir, Manchester Camerata, Menezes, Stoller Hall, Manchester review - imagination and star quality

Brazil-born conductor Simone Menezes, known for imaginative and pioneering concert presentation, presided over a striking and illuminating programme shared by Manchester’s Kantos Chamber Choir and Manchester Camerata, with the star quality of Karen...

Read more...

First Person: author-turned-actor Lydia Higman on a play that foregrounds a slice of forgotten history

I first read Anne Gunter’s story about five years ago, when I was in my first year of university at Oxford, little knowing it would over time lead to our play Gunter [seen first in Edinburgh and transferring 3-25 April to the Royal Court]. The...

Read more...

The Duchess of Malfi, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse review - the good end badly, but act best

“All discord without this circumference,” the Duchess of Malfi tells the good man she’s just asked to be her husband, “is only to be pitied and not feared”. Perhaps the villains should be more feared and less pitied in the imbalanced casting of...

Read more...

Samuel Takes a Break... in Male Dungeon No. 5 after a long but generally successful day of tours, The Yard Theatre review - funny and thought-provoking

You do not need to be Einstein to feel it. If the only dimension missing is time, 75% of a place’s identity can invade your very being, hollow you out, replace your soul with a void. It happened to me at Auschwitz and it’s happening to Samuel at...

Read more...

The Good John Proctor, Jermyn Street Theatre review - Salem-set drama loses some of its power in London

It is no surprise that the phrase “Witch Hunt” is Donald Trump’s favoured term to describe his legal travails. Leaving aside its connotations of a malevolent state going after an innocent victim whilst in the throes of a self-serving moral panic, it...

Read more...

Siglo de Oro, Spinacino Consort, Allies, Wigmore Hall review - a fun 17th century musical Christmas

The Wigmore Hall, the high church of Beethoven and Brahms, hosted something less elevated last night: a programme called “Hey for Christmas” presented by vocal ensemble Siglo de Oro and period instrument band Spinacino. The conceit was of recreating...

Read more...

Shakespeare: Rise of a Genius, BBC Two review - the Bard's soul bared in hybrid drama-documentary

Four centuries on from the publication of the First Folio, is there anything new to be said about William Shakespeare? Well, the fact that there is nothing old to be said about him (very little is known about the life of the glover’s son from...

Read more...

Masque of Might, Opera North review - a tale of ecological virtue

Sir David Pountney’s creation of a “masque” performance for our times, recycling music Purcell wrote for his, is downright good entertainment even if the plotline’s a bit incoherent.Now that’s a virtue, if you look at the 17th century models he’s...

Read more...

The Changeling, Southwark Playhouse review - wild ride proves too bumpy to land all its points

Writing about the upcoming 60th anniversary of the founding of the National Theatre in The Guardian recently, the usually reliable Michael Billington made a rare misstep. He called for the successor to Rufus Norris, the departing artistic director,...

Read more...

I Fagiolini, Hollingworth, Kings Place review - magnificent Monteverdi Vespers

It was great to see Kings Place full on Saturday night for I Fagiolini’s take on the Monteverdi Vespers, added, rock’n’roll style, as an “additional date due to public demand” after the Friday show sold out. And it was superb. Hearing the Vespers,...

Read more...
Subscribe to 17th century