Theatre

Review: Fiesta (The Sun Also Rises)

By John Nathan, February 14, 2013

Transposing famous novels to the stage presents particular challenges, not least satisfying the expectations of the book’s fans.

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Review: Antony Sher in The Captain of Kopenick

By Alan Montague, February 7, 2013

Categorised by the Nazis as “half Jewish” because his Protestant grandfather was born a Jew, the popular German dramatist Carl Zuckmayer managed to escape the clutches of the Gestapo by moving to America. They got his play though, and banned it in 1933.

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Review: Old Times

By John Nathan, February 7, 2013

Apparently, there is good reason to take up the offer to see Kristin Scott Thomas and Lia Williams alternate in the roles of Anna and Kate. It is said that hidden nuances in Pinter’s 1971 play are revealed. I’m not convinced they are worth the price of two tickets but then, I have seen only one version.

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Review: The Turn of the Screw

By John Nathan, February 7, 2013

This chilling adaptation of Henry James's 1897 novella, in which a governess (Anna Madeley) finds that the two children she has been hired to teach (Lucy Morton and Laurence Belcher) are haunted by the ghosts of dead adults, certainly has the desired effect.

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Review: Rowan Atkinson in Quartermaine's Terms

By John Nathan, January 31, 2013

It is a face that millions around the world have learned to love. Even for the doubters, that gormless expression was a highlight of the Olympic ceremony when Rowan Atkinson played a pianist with the least demanding job in the world.

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Review: Port

By John Nathan, January 31, 2013

Soppy sentimentalist Simon Stephens is at the National. At least, that is how a newcomer to Stephens’s work might see the dramatist after watching this revival of his 2002 play, which features an optimistic pop song and a sunrise. Old hands, by contrast, would have been steeling themselves for the brutality and violence that often characterise Stephens’s works.

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Review: Di and Viv and Rose

By John Nathan, January 31, 2013

I wish that playwright Amelia Bullmore had found a less obvious way of delivering the tragedy in this tragicomedy. To reveal her device would spoil the plot but it jars because, in most other respects, her warm and witty comedy about three women defies expectation.

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Review: No Quarter

By John Nathan, January 24, 2013

So for the moment at least, Polly Stenham has found her shtick and is shticking to it.

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Review: The Judas Kiss

By John Nathan, January 24, 2013

In David Hare’s 1998 play about Oscar Wilde, it is not the witticisms and aphorisms of Hare’s subject that take the breath away, but the sophistry of his spoilt young lover, Lord Alfred Douglas. He hoists even his basest betrayals of Wilde to the moral high ground with declarations about his own integrity and talent, of which he has none.

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Review: Olga's Room

By John Nathan, January 17, 2013

Olga Benario was a German Jewish communist who undertook daring missions for her cause, including springing her lover and fellow German communist Otto Braun from jail. After being given military training by the Soviets,

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