It is encouraging that the list of recommendations for October isn’t filled with musicals. Are straight plays back? I wouldn’t count on it in this economic climate. So let’s bask in the chance to hear words without music.
Director Gus Kikkonen and cast come up with a bright, literate presentation of William Shakespeare’s play “Measure for Measure,” a potentially dark comedy pregnant with power.
Multiple Google searches suggest that no one is celebrating the 400th anniversary of the second of Ben Jonson’s tragedies. I don’t think I will live to see a production of CATILINE, but attention should be paid to this awkward but powerful script. Filled with moral strength, perceptive realpolitik, and rich poetry, it proffers a brilliant serio-comic meditation on political gangsterism.
The likable Commonwealth Shakespeare Company staging leans very heavily on the comedy in ALL’S WELL THAT ENDS WELL, minimizing the Bard’s melancholic undertow.
Buckets of blood and handfuls of guts always look slightly ridiculous splashed and dangled around on stage, though I must admit that this is the first RICHARD III I have seen with a working chainsaw.
Reviews of eight stage productions in London, with two terrific shows noted: American dramatist Bruce Norris’s powerful study of racial relations, Clybourne Park, and Alan Ayckbourn’s 1980 farce Season’s Greetings. Another winner on the West End, the critically acclaimed War Horse, comes to New York next week. By Joann Green Breuer. Penelope by Enda Walsh […]
An exciting month, and that isn’t hyperbole. A couple of North American premieres: a futuristic opera from MIT’s Tod Machover and poet Robert Pinsky and a drama tweaking The New Testament from Howard Brenton. Toss in iconic director Peter Brook staging Beckett, F. Murray Abraham as Shylock, and Car Talk:The Musical and you are talking about taking out the smelling salts
Two recent productions of Shakespeare, one a heralded London staging at the Donmar Warehous heading to New York in April, the other an Actors’ Shakespeare Project presentation in Davis Square, provide examples of the strengths and weaknesses of tackling the Bard without frills.
Julie Taymor’s film version of William Shakespeare’s The Tempest is conclusive proof that just because we can do something with technology does not mean that we should. Less is often more, and one great text in hand is worth a dozen computers in the mix. And what was the director thinking with the racist portrayal […]
Royal National Theatre Director Nicholas Hytner is determined to make the drama as relevant to our own times as to the Bard’s. The setting is a somewhat flimsy, gray-walled salon. Theatrical apparatuses are visible: a klieg light here, a fresnel there. Hamlet by William Shakespeare. Staged by the Royal National Theatre, London, England. Taped by […]