Posts

Showing posts with the label comment

Featured Post

The male gaze: Turning the screw

Image
It's been a while since trips to the theatre. I've been busy. But it's nice to see that it's the creative process that is at the heart of Kevin Kelly's Turning the Screw. And what gives rise to it. It's a dramatisation of the creative process leading up to composer Benjamin Britten's premiere of his opera, The Turning of the Screw. With deadlines approaching, Britten seems stuck over melodies and unsure about completing the piece for its summer premiere. But the selection of twelve-year-old choirboy David Hemmings in the leading role of Miles within the opera is the spark that motivates him to complete the piece. And his presence may stir other feelings, too. It's currently playing at the Kings Head Theatre .  Britten's fascination with young boys has been the subject of a detailed book, Britten's Children. The book suggests that Britten saw himself as a young boy of 13. It's almost as if he saw himself as Peter Pan, albeit if Peter Pan was a

On long runs and intervals: 90 minutes straight through

Image
When is too much of a good thing, too much? I love going out to the theatre, but there is nothing more I love than hearing that what I am seeing is ninety minutes straight through. The fun of going out, the magic of theatre, brilliant performances, terrific writing... All in an hour and a half. I was thinking about this during the week when at The Maids at Trafalgar Studios I misread the play length. I thought it was one hour fifteen but it actually was one hour fifty. "Do make sure you go to the bathroom beforehand," I thought I heard the usher say in a motherly voice. I'm sure they didn't say that but that is what I heard. The Maids is a stylish new translation where two maids plot macabre ways of killing their mistress. It is a new translation of the Jean Genet play by Benedict Andrews and playwright Andrew Upton. It was first staged by Sydney Theatre Company in 2013. In this production Uzo Aduba (from Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black) and Zawe Ashton

Comment: Remembering and recognition for awards Season in Theatre... including #alsorecognised

Image
Awards and accolades are a great way of remembering some of the great performances of the past year. Assuming that you can remember them... There is so much stuff that is great to see in London that whittling anything down to a shortlist of three or four seems a tad cruel. Still it is great that there is a small but growing group of awards to recognise. The Oliviers and The Whats On Stage Awards cover the big end of town, but there is also the Also Recognised Awards . It's less glamorous than those two and winners only get to pose with a selfie. Set up by My Theatre Mates Mark Shenton and Terri Paddock , they celebrate lesser-known but worthy talent in fields overlooked by other awards bodies. This year's winners included a number of winners or nominees from the Olivier Awards. But there were also some differences. Bugsy Malone, which lost out to Gypsy for Best Musical Revival at the Oliviers, won for Best Ensemble Performance. Kenneth Branagh’s production of