Regime change at Hampstead Theatre. The era of special measures is over and Ed Hall, son of Sir Peter, has taken charge. Hall’s debut show is daring in its complete lack of audacity.
‘We’re a beastly family, and I hate us!’ laments Sorel Bliss in Hay Fever. And at first it seems all four Blisses share that sentiment.
Who’s my favourite stage actress? Since you ask, Olivia Williams in Shakespeare and Nancy Carroll in anything.
Let’s talk about Tucker. The Beeb’s mockumentary The Thick of It has been hailed as a brilliantly incisive glimpse into…
Royal Court, until 2 October Tiny Kushner
Tricycle, until 25 September
The somewhat straightlaced theatre-going audiences of 1880s America, eager for performances by European artistes like Jenny Lind and solid, home-grown, classical actors such as Otis Skinner, were hardly prepared for the on-stage vulgarity that the (usually) Russian and Polish immigrant impressarios, with their particular nous for show-biz, were to unleash into the saloons and fleapits across the young nation.
Romeo and Juliet
Courtyard Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon, in rep until 27 August
County Hall, until 22 May The Real Thing
Old Vic, until 5 June
To review some new books about Shakespeare is not to note a revival of interest, but simply to let down a bucket into an undammed river.
Must You Go? My Life with Harold Pinter, by Antonia Fraser
Just as Alec Guinness resented being seen as Obi-Wan Kenobi for the rest of his life, Ian Richardson might have resented Francis Urquhart, the Machiavelli of Michael Dobbs’ House of Cards trilogy, whose catchphrase gives this book its title.
Not every writer would begin a history of the 1950s with a vignette in which the young Keith Waterhouse treads on Princess Margaret by mistake.
A few years ago I was given the Rough Guide to Shakespeare by Andrew Dickson. If you, like me, need…
Shaw Death and the King’s Horseman
Film There’s been a rush of good movies recently — Rachel Getting Married (with Anne Hathaway) and Vicky Cristina Barcelona,…
No Man’s Land
Duke of York’s Mine
Girl with a Pearl Earring
Theatre Royal Haymarket Waste
Theatre It promises to be a wonderful autumn for London’s theatre-goers. Ivanov, Tom Stoppard’s adaptation of Chekhov’s early play, has…
Hampstead Theatre Do You Know Where Your Daughter Is?
Hackney Empire Eurobeat
FestivalsIn only its third year, the laid-back Latitude (17-20 July) has gained a reputation for being one of Britain’s finest…
MUSIC Proms: Get booking now for this two-month season (18 July to 13 September). Highlights include the Berliner Philharmoniker with…
THEATRE I can strongly recommend God of Carnage, the new play by Yasmina Reza, which tracks the descent into madness…
I have three books on the go at the moment: Charles Leadbeater’s brilliant analysis of web-world, We-Think, The Craftsman, by…
It seems bizarre to me that book shopping at this time of year should be about negotiating your way through…
Books Letters of Ted Hughes – ed. Christopher Reid/Faber Finally! Moving, passionate, angry, funny, striking, brilliant and beautiful beyond belief,…