Theatre

Sweeping, sod-you comedy – irresistible: Billionaire Boy reviewed

24 January 2020 10:00 pm

Falling In Love Again features two of the 20th century’s best-known sex athletes. Ron Elisha’s drama covers a long drunken…

People expecting punishment won’t be disappointed: Almeida’s Duchess of Malfi reviewed

18 January 2020 9:00 am

The Duchess of Malfi is one of those classics that everyone knows by name but not many have witnessed on…

Redneck twaddle: Young Vic’s Fairview reviewed

11 January 2020 9:00 am

Fairview by Jackie Sibblies Drury won last year’s Pulitzer Prize. It deserves additional awards for promoting racial disharmony and entrenching…

‘I aspire to write for posterity’: An interview with Tom Stoppard

21 December 2019 9:00 am

Sir Tom Stoppard is Britain’s — perhaps the world’s — leading playwright. Born Tomas Straussler in Zlin, Czechoslovakia, in 1937,…

Full of fascinating data and excellent comedy: Messiah at Stratford Circus reviewed

21 December 2019 9:00 am

I’ve joined the Black Panthers. At least I think I have. I took part in an induction ceremony at the…

A flimsy tale of self-pity and thwarted ambition: Hunger at the Arcola reviewed

14 December 2019 9:00 am

Oh my God. The Nazis have invaded the Arcola Theatre. Norwegian novelist Knut Hamsen won the Nobel Prize in 1920…

‘You either are panto, or you aren’t’: Christopher Biggins on his favourite time of year

7 December 2019 9:00 am

Christopher Biggins has managed to bag some of the nation’s favourite TV characters over the years: Lukewarm in Porridge and…

Punk spirit underpinned by darkness and horror: Richard III at the Sam Wanamaker Theatre reviewed

7 December 2019 9:00 am

The history plays are different. In dramas like Othello, Hamlet and Much Ado, Shakespeare laid out the plot with great…

Smart, funny and beautifully imagined: RSC’s The Boy in the Dress reviewed

7 December 2019 9:00 am

David Walliams is one of the biggest-selling children’s authors in the world (having shifted some 25 million copies in more…

An astonishing treat: Dear Evan Hansen at the Noël Coward Theatre reviewed

30 November 2019 9:00 am

Dear Evan Hansen, by Steven Levenson, opens as a standard American teen-angst musical. Evan is a sweaty geek with a…

Riveting and beautifully staged analysis of totalitarianism: Arcola’s #WeAreArrested reviewed

23 November 2019 9:00 am

When the RSC does modern drama it usually lays on an ultra-worthy yarn with a huge cast, dozens of fancy…

The script’s a dud: Antipodes at the Dorfman Theatre reviewed

16 November 2019 9:00 am

The Antipodes, by the acclaimed dramatist Annie Baker, is set in a Hollywood writers’ room. Seven hired scribblers are brainstorming…

Why the Royal Court is theatre’s answer to Islamic State

9 November 2019 9:00 am

The Royal Court is the theatre’s answer to Islamic State, a conspiracy of nihilists fascinated with death, supported by groups…

‘The only place I can’t get my plays on is Britain’: Sir Peter Brook interviewed

2 November 2019 9:00 am

‘Everyone of us knows we deserve to be punished,’ says the frail old man before me in a hotel café.…

A surefire international hit: Lungs reviewed

2 November 2019 9:00 am

No power on earth can stop Lungs from becoming an international hit. Duncan Macmillan’s slick two-handed comedy reunites Matt Smith…

How did Richard Herring become the comedy podcast king?

26 October 2019 9:00 am

What does it mean to be a successful comic? Richard Herring isn’t sure. He’s been a ‘professional funnyman’ for nearly…

A 90-minute slog up to a dazzling peak: ‘Master Harold’… and the boys reviewed

26 October 2019 9:00 am

Athol Fugard likes to dump his characters in settings with no dramatic thrust or tension. A prison yard is a…

A hoot from start to finish: The Man in the White Suit reviewed

19 October 2019 9:00 am

The Man in the White Suit, famously, is a yarn about yarn. A brilliant young boffin stumbles across an everlasting…

Circus routine rather than theatre: Noises Off reviewed

12 October 2019 9:00 am

Michael Frayn’s backstage comedy, Noises Off, is the theatre’s answer to Trooping the Colour. Everyone agrees that it’s an amazing…

Flimsy and pretentious sketches: Caryl Churchill’s Glass. Kill. Bluebeard. Imp. reviewed

5 October 2019 9:00 am

Caryl Churchill is back at the Royal Court with a weird collection of sketches. The first is set on a…

Is it time to give up on the Ibsen adaptations?

21 September 2019 9:00 am

Pub quiz question: what do John Osborne, Brian Friel and Patrick Marber have in common? The answer is they’ve all…

A decorative pageant that would appeal to civic grandees: The Secret River reviewed

7 September 2019 9:00 am

The Secret River opens in a fertile corner of New South Wales in the early 1800s. William, a cockney pauper…

Watching Stephen Fry was like being in the presence of a god

31 August 2019 9:00 am

Stephen Fry lies prone on an empty stage. A red ball rolls in from the wings and bashes him in…

Tony Slattery is still a miraculously gifted comedian

24 August 2019 9:00 am

Some of the marketing efforts by amateur impresarios up in Edinburgh are extraordinary. I was handed a leaflet for a…

Lap-dancing with ISIS, the real Monica Lewinsky and one of the strangest things I’ve ever seen: Edinburgh Fringe roundup

17 August 2019 9:00 am

Clive Anderson’s show about Macbeth, ‘the greatest drama ever written’, offers us an hour of polished comedy loosely themed around…