Leopoldstadt Wyndham’s Theatre until October 30th 2021 Tom Stoppard’s Leopoldstadt would have been better as a TV mini-series rather than this sprawling, over-populated two and a quarter hour play without an intermission. It is a long watch and although eminently worthwhile, feels too much like a history lesson.
The Reichstag is Burning …matches songs, ranging from the 1920s to the near contemporary, with the crucial stages of Hitler’s ascent to dictatorial power, not least the burning of the Reichstag. Black Box Live at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe by Hartstone-Kitney Productions.
Covid Lockdown Breath Machine, Online. The Edinburgh Fringe has always been the place to push at the limits of what theatre is. This year, that is truer than ever as the uncertainties of COVID-19 have driven a digital shift.
Oleanna, by David Mamet. Arts Theatre. Review by Graham Buchan. David Mamet has had a substantial forty-year plus career writing plays and films which drill into the deeper recesses of the American psyche with unrelenting precision.
An “absurdly normal” love story and it admits the appalling truth that all love stories, not just the high romance of Romeo and Juliet, are essentially tragic: they end in loss and when Alzheimer’s strikes, the cruelty is exaggerated because a once charismatic personality disintegrates.
At the start of 2020, Southwark Playhouse commissioned a group of playwrights to write short plays. The aim was for them to be performed on stage by the Elders Company, the playhouse’s drama group for anyone aged 65 and over, but then lockdown came along.
In a time of bitter, divisive politics, the positive, as well as the negative aspect of the COVID-19 pandemic is that it is truly global: people everywhere feel the same fear, sorrow and frustration at the same time.
Even more than an outpouring of passionate pacifism, Benjamin Britten’s Owen Wingrave is a universal exploration of the heroic strength of character required to reject decades of blind allegiance to an unholy cause.