Funny, reassuring and irrepressibly warm, the West End version of Only Fools and Horses is proving to be the right musical at the right time.
In his final decade, the Czech nationalist Janacek, found a new love interest and produced five major operas. The most accessible and refreshing is The Cunning Little Vixen (premiered in 1924), with its comic acceptance – like late Shakespeare – of the redemptive power of love and renewal, and its tragic awareness of the forces of raw nature and of life’s disappointments.
Don Carlo – or Don Carlos – in history was the mentally unstable son of Philip II of Spain whose brief betrothal to the woman his father later married and contacts with Protestant rebels in the Low Countries provided ammunition for the “black legend” propaganda whipped up by the opponents of his father’s rule.
Almost exactly 100 years ago on April 13, in Amritsar, the British Indian Army fired into a crowd of unarmed Punjabis, killing and harming hundreds. Director Phil Wilmott marks this appalling example of man’s inhumanity to man by transporting Othello from Venice and Cyprus to the India of the British Raj.
This was the first time I had seen this operetta and the idea of Viennese kitsch did not excite me. Director Max Webster clearly shares my antipathy for schlock. His production is a wonderful reframing of the story from a post #MeToo perspective.
Five hundred years ago, Peckham was green and pleasant. By the 1980s and 1990s, when two of its most famous fictional characters Del Boy and Rodney Trotter were plying their dodgy wares, even the pigeons wanted to be elsewhere, or so Rodney tells us.