Olivier theatre

Star quality: Mark Rylance as Iago at Shakespeare’s Globe

Intelligent, enjoyable, beautiful, eccentric: Globe's Othello reviewed

8 September 2018 9:00 am

It’s intelligent, enjoyable, beautiful to look at and funny in unexpected places, yet Othello at the Globe didn’t quite meet…

If we offer Ian McKellan a peerage, will he promise not to inflict his King Lear on us again?

4 August 2018 9:00 am

Gandalf, also known as Ian McKellen, has awarded himself another lap of honour by bringing King Lear back to London.…

Why has the National given over its largest stage to one of the nation's smallest talents?

16 June 2018 9:00 am

The National has made its largest stage available to one of the nation’s smallest talents. If Brian Friel had been…

Anne-Marie Duff as Lady Macbeth in Macbeth at the National Theatre

Rory Kinnear is less Macbeth, more a tetchy manager of an Amazon warehouse

17 March 2018 9:00 am

The Best Man by Gore Vidal is set during a fictional American election in 1960. Two gifted candidates seek their…

Lloyd Evans witnesses a sexual atrocity at Wyndham's Theatre

21 October 2017 9:00 am

Simon Stephens gives his plays misleading titles. Nuclear War, Pornography and Punk Rock contained little trace of their advertised ingredients.…

Bring on the dancing-girls: Follies at the Oliver

It’s hard to care about these geriatric bed-hoppers: Follies at the Olivier reviewed

16 September 2017 9:00 am

Stephen Sondheim’s Follies takes a huge leap into the past. It’s 1971 and we meet two middle-aged couples who knew…

Barber Shop Chronicles assembles some of the finest comic talents around

17 June 2017 9:00 am

The National Theatre could hardly resist Barber Shop Chronicles. The play shines a light on a disregarded ethnic community, black…

Torture porn done with the trite slickness of a Vogue photo shoot: Salomé reviewed

27 May 2017 9:00 am

The Olivier describes Salomé by Yaël Farber as a ‘new’ play. Not quite. It premièred in Washington a couple of…

I’ve never enjoyed Twelfth Night but the Olivier Theatre’s new production is triumphant

4 March 2017 9:00 am

It’s every impresario’s dream. Buy a little off-West End venue to try out stuff for fun. Andrew Lloyd Webber has…

Madeleine Worrall as Wendy in the Olivier’s post-truth ‘Peter Pan’

For those who want to gawp at the underclass from a safe distance: Buried Child reviewed

31 December 2016 9:00 am

Buried Child is a typical Sam Shepard play. The main character, Dodge, is a brain-damaged alcoholic cripple stuck in a…

We’re all going on a summer holiday: the cast of ‘Sunset at the Villa Thalia’

Brecht’s work won’t survive the 21st century: The Threepenny Opera reviewed

11 June 2016 9:00 am

Bertolt Brecht took The Threepenny Opera  from an 18th-century script by John Gay and relocated it to Victorian London. This…

Les Blancs at the Olivier is good-ish, but it won't be a classic

16 April 2016 9:00 am

Les Blancs had a troubled birth. In 1965 several unfinished drafts of the play were entrusted by its dying author,…

Rosalie Craig as Rosalind in ‘As You Like It’

How did this plotless goon-show wind up at the Royal Court?

14 November 2015 9:00 am

One of the challenges of art is to know the difference between innovation and error. I wonder sometimes if the…

Our Country’s Good prizes the concerns of the actors over the audience

5 September 2015 9:00 am

Australia, 1788. A transport ship arrives in Port Jackson (later Sydney harbour) carrying hundreds of convicts and a detachment of…

Acerbic sex bomb: Susannah Fielding as Mrs Sullen in ‘The Beaux’ Stratagem’

The Anglican elite laid bare: Temple at the Donmar Warehouse reviewed

6 June 2015 9:00 am

In October 2011 anti-capitalist vagrants built an open-air squat outside St Paul’s within shrieking distance of London’s financial heart. The…

Poverty ogling: Stephanie Street and Meera Syal in ‘Behind the Beautiful Forevers’

The National’s latest attempt to cheer us up: three hours of poverty porn

29 November 2014 9:00 am

Bombay is now called Mumbai by everyone bar its residents, whose historic name (from the Portuguese for ‘beautiful cove’) has…

Playing it safe

4 December 2010 12:00 am

Put the life of a legendary music-maker/campaigner in the hands of a controversial choreographer and you’ll possibly end up with some explosive stuff.