sat 13/07/2024

1930s

Visit from an Unknown Woman, Hampstead Theatre review - slim, overly earthbound slice of writer's angst

Who was Stefan Zweig? It's likely that it's mostly older folk who studied German literature at A-level who have encountered this superb Viennese writer in his native language, though his short story from 1922, Letter to an Unknown Woman, eventually...

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Album: Madeleine Peyroux - Let's Walk

Madeleine Peyroux made her name with her second album, 2004’s Careless Love. It consists almost completely of cover versions, delivered in a quiet, jazz-bluesey shuffle redolent of singers from the 1930s. She’s never flown as high again but has...

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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,...

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Gerstein, LSO, Rattle, Barbican review - American glitter and sinew

How lucky those of us were who grew up musically with the young Simon Rattle’s highly original programming in the 1980s. He’s still doing it at a time when diminishing resources can dictate more careful repertoire, and last night’s Americana proved...

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Cable Street, Southwark Playhouse review - engaging new musical in an impressive staging

Hot on the heels of Brigid Larmour’s updating of The Merchant of Venice to the East End in 1936, a spirited new musical across town at Southwark Playhouse is tackling the same topic: the impact of rising British fascism in the same era,...

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The Merchant of Venice 1936, Criterion Theatre review - radical revamp with a passionate agenda

It’s an unhappy time to be staging Shakespeare’s problematic play, given its antisemitic content, so hats off to adaptor-director Brigid Larmour and actor Tracy-Ann Oberman for persevering with this updated version, now in the West End. Their...

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Dear Octopus, National Theatre - period rarity is a real pleasure

Sisters are doing it for themselves, just as families as a whole are, too, on the London stage these days. Dear Octopus follows Till the Stars Come Down and The Hills of California as the third domestic drama I've seen in the last 10 days and...

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Kin, National Theatre review - heartfelt show makes its demands, but yields its rewards

Waiting in the National Theatre’s foyer on press night, a space teeming with people speaking different languages, boasting different heritages – London in other words – news came through that leading members of the government had resigned because...

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The Boys in the Boat review - a Boy’s Own true story told in formulaic style

Seabiscuit, Creed, Rocky, The Full Monty, Chariots of Fire… George Clooney’s latest directorial project is in the same vein as these earlier films, but swap Seabiscuit et al for a rowing eight. All have a format film-makers love because they...

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She Stoops to Conquer, Orange Tree Theatre review - much-loved classic rumbustiously updated

Oliver Goldsmith was a literary all-rounder – novelist, poet and playwright – remembered chiefly for one example of each discipline, respectively The Vicar of Wakefield, "The Deserted Village" and, of course, above all, She Stoops to...

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A Voyage Round My Father, Theatre Royal, Bath review - Rupert Everett excels in a play showing its age

Like theatre itself, the law finds its voice in stories, performance and spectacle. Any law student will, from that very first induction lecture, become suffused in a culture that is informed by and in turn informs theatre, some classes more like an...

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Ruisi, Hallé, Elder, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester review - returning to Ravel’s glories

Continuing the retrospective aspect of his final season as music director of the Hallé, Sir Mark Elder returned last night to Ravel’s Daphnis et Chloé, the work with which he opened the orchestra’s 2014-15 Manchester series to such memorable effect....

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