Theatre

Jackie Mason: Fearless

By John Nathan, March 1, 2012

To the Jews watching his final farewell show in Britain, Jackie Mason is family.

He may be embarrassing family, the kind of relative you would not want your gentile friend to meet (for, in his view, gentiles are only good for fixing Jew-unfriendly objects such as carburettors), but he is still family.

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Review: The Death of Klinghoffer

By Stephen Pollard, March 1, 2012

John Adams's The Death of Klinghoffer trails controversy in its wake. The eminent musicologist Richard Taruskin has called it antisemitic.

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Review: In Basildon

By John Nathan, March 1, 2012

The working-class play has stormed back on to the Royal Court stage. Romford-born David Eldridge sets his play in the living room of an Essex semi owned by the recently deceased Len, and populates it with Len's mourners - two feuding sisters, the comically named Maureen and Doreen, and Ken, his best mate.

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Review: Singin' In The Rain

February 23, 2012

Let's face it - no matter how funny the rendition of Make 'em Laugh; how perky the performance of Good Morning; how much the duet You Were Meant for Me makes you swoon, the success of this stage version of Gene Kelly's great 1952 MGM musical was always gong to rest on one song.

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Review: The Bomb - A Partial History

By John Nathan, February 23, 2012

The fear is back.

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Review: Absent Friends

By John Nathan, February 16, 2012

If beneath Terry and June's cheery sitcom personalities there beat a heart of bleak dissatisfaction, they might have looked something like Paul and Diana, central characters in Absent Friends.

In Alan Ayckbourn's 1974 play, the couple host a tea party in honour of Colin - superbly played by Reece Shearsmith like a cardigan-clad Ronnie Corbett - who unwittingly throws verbal hand grenades into p

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Review: The Recruiting Officer

By John Nathan, February 16, 2012

The stage is candle-lit. The audience is welcomed by country musicians whose pleasingly rural strains segue into the subtlest of warnings to turn off mobile phones. This inaugural production by the Donmar's new artistic director Josie Rourke feels very different from the austere, black-as-liquorice look of many a show directed by Michael Grandage, Rourke's predecessor.

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Review: The Devil and Mister Punch

By John Nathan, February 9, 2012

Although light entertainment's favourite wife-beater made his stage debut 350 years ago, this surreal tribute to Mr Punch, performed within and around an oak-panelled puppet theatre bedecked with bunting, has a very Victorian feel.

Julian Crouch's production is packed with ideas that subvert the art of puppetry, while the story told here is much more Punch than Judy.

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Review: The Pitchfork Disney

By John Nathan, February 9, 2012

There has been revisionist talk of late questioning the reputation of the so-called In-Yer-Face movement. It asks whether all those urban, often sexually explicit and violent plays of the 1990s, which so shocked critics and audiences, really amount to a golden era of drama?

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Opera: Cosi Fan Tutte

By Stephen Pollard, February 2, 2012

There is only one reason to see this ninth revival of Jonathan Miller's production of Mozart's Così Fan Tutte. But it's compelling.

Sir Colin Davis' conducting is peerless. It's easy to take him for granted, so familiar a presence is he in London's musical life.

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