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Kafka-ish: Kafka @Finborough

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In offering proof that Kafka is everything to everyone - writer-performer Jack Klaff plays various roles, including the man himself in what is a part tour, part immersion and part legend of Franz Kafka. He is a writer who achieved fame after his life was cut short due to succumbing to tuberculosis at the age of forty. He is probably better known for his reputation and the Kafkaesque style attributed to his writing than his life. But after this piece, you’re left curious to learn more about the man and his works. And that has to be the best theatrical tribute you could give a writer, even for a writer who stipulated that his works be destroyed upon his death. It’s currently playing at the Finborough Theatre . Franz Kafka was born in Prague in 1883. In 1901, he was admitted to a university and began studying law. While studying, he met Max Brod, who would become his best friend and eventual literary executor. Brod would posthumously publish many of his works and writings. Kafka’s life co

Dad Jokes: Dead Dad Dog @finborough

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So what happens if your dad returns from the dead to haunt you for fun in mid-eighties Edinburgh? The first London production of Dead Dad Dog in 35 years shows that new ideas of the past just become the old things of the present. It’s an amusing concept made enjoyable by the likeable leads in the piece. Written by John McKay, who would go on to find fame in television and film, it’s currently playing at the Finborough Theatre .  Due to cast illness, the second half of this show, Sunny Boy, has not gone ahead. It’s a shame, as the second half was a sequel to the piece set in Glasgow in 2023. And so, while we miss the update, we can enjoy the eighties in all its glory and marvel at the fashion, thinking, and the fascinating possibility that if you died in the early seventies, you would never know who Margaret Thatcher was.  The premise is that young man Eck (Angus Miller) is getting ready for an interview for the BBC in Edinburgh when his father, Willie (Liam Brennan), appears. The only

Let 'em have it: An Inspector Calls @aninspector

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  Stephen Daldry’s enduring production of JB Priestley’s An Inspector Calls is back in London. Catching it this time around - the last time I saw it in 2010 did not leave much of an impression as I had forgotten I had seen it -  had me pondering its enduring popularity. It’s a simple detective story set in 1912. A Detective arrives unannounced to interview a Yorkshire factory owner Arthur Birling ( Clive Francis ) and his family about the suicide of woman. Each scene serves to rub off a little more of the veneer of respectability of their lives. In what could be a tedious premise, the piece starts making you think about broader enduring issues in this country. Soon I found it evoking the polarised politics of the current day, the rise of fashionable far right politics and Scottish independence.