sat 02/07/2022

Ibsen

Hedda Gabler, Old Vic

Hedda Gabler – the doomy tragedy, the one with the pistol, the “female Hamlet”. We all know the score when it comes to Ibsen. All, that is, except apparently for Sheridan Smith, who recently admitted in an interview that she hadn’t heard of the play...

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St John's Night, Jermyn Street Theatre

Before Ibsen was, well, Ibsen, he had a successful career as a failed playwright. Producing works on a spectrum between unremarkable and outright bad, he muddled his way through to his late thirties when the publication of Brand derailed what might...

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A Doll's House, Young Vic

The front door of Ibsen’s A Doll’s House may first have slammed shut in 1879, but it’s a sound whose echoes and re-echoes continue to resonate. The crash of feminist selfhood, bursting through the catatonic tranquility of domestic order, originally...

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The Lady From the Sea, Rose Theatre, Kingston

“The lady from the sea” is what a remote Norwegian fjord town calls the young second wife of its good doctor, an elusive woman who seems to walk in the footsteps of the ghost of her well-loved predecessor. Joely Richardson is doing much the same by...

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Judgement Day, The Print Room

There comes a point in a writer’s life when he – it’s usually a he – stops writing about life and starts writing about writing. With Ibsen this stage arrived in the self-reflexive rage and unquiet of When We Dead Awaken – the play the author seemed...

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Emperor and Galilean, National Theatre

Miracles and omens, blind faith and free will: Ibsen’s epic 1873 drama sinks its teeth into some tough, meaty themes. That it neither breaks the jaw, nor proves totally indigestible in this British premiere is testament to the power of Jonathan Kent...

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Opinion: 'Internalised' acting is a complete turn-off

Do Stanislavski and Lee Strasberg have a lot to answer for? Or can we place the blame, if blame it is, elsewhere? I’m referring to the steady, insidious advance of theatre mumbling. You may have noticed it at a theatre near you. It’s the art that...

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The Master Builder, Almeida Theatre

Halvard Solness and Hilde Wangel have stalked each other among the shadow goblins of Henrik Ibsen’s extraordinary symbol-laden drama in two major productions this year. In Chichester, Philip Franks’s staging and David Edgar’s new version of the text...

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Ghosts, Duchess Theatre

It is difficult for modern audiences to appreciate just how shocking Henrik Ibsen’s Ghosts was when it was first published in 1881. Its sexual and syphilitic storyline - how the sins of the fathers are visited upon their sons - was considered...

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