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Comedy gold: The Upstart Crow at the Gielgud Theatre reviewed

A Moorish princess shipwrecked on the English coast disguises herself as a boy to protect her virtue. Arriving in London, she’s hired by William Shakespeare as an assistant to his maidservant Kate, who instantly falls in love with the exotic cross-dressing newcomer. This absurdity, familiar to fans of Twelfth Night, is the opening move in


Eurotrash Verdi: ENO’s Luisa Miller reviewed

Verdi’s Luisa Miller is set in the Tyrol in the early 17th century, and for some opera directors that’s a problem. After all, they’re busy people. They probably never had time to read Wolf Hall, or to speak to any of the 100 million people worldwide who watched Game of Thrones. It’s self-evident to them





A bruising encounter: Pina Bausch’s Bluebeard reviewed

Pina Bausch’s best work always hovered between the familiar and the unknown. The late choreographer revelled in borders and thresholds, the hinterlands where fantasies collide with reality. The gulf between men and women — their conflicting desires, instincts, clout — was one of her favourite trenches to plumb, so it’s no wonder she was drawn