All stories by Jenny Gilbert on BroadwayStars

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

BWW Review: KING LEAR, Old Vic, 7 November 2016 by Jenny Gilbert

Gender-blind casting has arrived and we'd better get used to it. Correction it seems we are getting used to it, viz the imminent revival of the Donmar's all-female Shakespeare trilogy. So th…

Linked From BroadwayWorld at 10:55AM
Friday, November 4, 2016

Fool for Love, Found111 by Jenny Gilbert

FOOL FOR LOVE, FOUND111 Sam Shepard's incest play makes a fine swansong for a pop-up venueSam Shepard's incest play makes a fine swansong for a pop-up venueWho is the fool in Sam Shepar…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 06:36AM
Thursday, October 27, 2016

BWW Review: ANASTASIA, Royal Opera House, 26 October 2016 by Jenny Gilbert

If Kenneth MacMillan had left well alone, the taut little chamber piece he made in 1967 - stark, inventive and affecting - would be hailed a modernist masterpiece by now. Instead, swayed by …

Linked From BroadwayWorld at 10:48AM
Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Lunch/The Bow of Ulysses, Trafalgar Studios by Jenny Gilbert

The perception of Steven many-hats Berkoff as “one of the major minor contemporary dramatists in Britain” makes sense when you see this. Here are two chamber pieces, both two-handers, wr…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 09:20PM
Friday, September 23, 2016

Good Canary, Rose Theatre, Kingston by Jenny Gilbert

Very occasionally the playing of a play leaves a deeper impression than does the play itself. This is the case with Good Canary, a lippy, sweary tragicomedy by Zach Helm about secrets and ad…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 05:13AM
Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Unreachable, Royal Court by Jenny Gilbert

There are obvious reasons why films about the theatre outnumber plays about the movie industry, but here’s a play that bucks that trend. Anthony Neilson’s latest drama is located on a fi…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 07:49PM
Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Vassa Zheleznova, Southwark Playhouse by Jenny Gilbert

In the town of Nizhni Novgorod where Maxim Gorky was born, it was said that “the houses are made of stone, the people of iron”. Vassa Zheleznova, the titular matriarch of this rarely per…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 09:20PM
Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Haïm: In the Light of a Violin, Print Room at the Coronet by Jenny Gilbert

On the face of it, there is nothing in this tightly focussed little piece that says anything new about the Holocaust. The plight of a poor Jewish boy unfortunate enough to be growing up in 1…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 09:15PM
Friday, May 20, 2016

The Invisible Hand, Tricycle Theatre by Jenny Gilbert

In the long tradition of fictional characters who embody their monikers, the naming of Nick Bright hardly counts as the most colourful, but it has a sardonic edge when pinned to a young bank…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 05:37AM
Sunday, April 17, 2016

The Sugar-Coated Bullets of the Bourgeoisie, Arcola by Jenny Gilbert

The playwright Anders Lustgarten has spent a considerable chunk of his life reading and writing and thinking about China, and clearly wants to set a few points straight. Tired of the persist…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 06:32AM
Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Miss Atomic Bomb, St James Theatre by Jenny Gilbert

As settings for musical comedy go, this one promised some boom for your buck. Las Vegas in the early 1950s was just emerging as a magnet not only for hedonists and gamblers, mobsters and sho…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 09:02PM
Thursday, March 3, 2016

Welcome Home, Captain Fox!, Donmar Warehouse by Jenny Gilbert

It’s often remarked that are no new stories, only old stories retold. The French playwright Jean Anouihl got the idea for his first play from a French newspaper report of 1919, about a you…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 06:18AM
Friday, February 26, 2016

A Midsummer Night's Dream, Lyric Hammersmith by Jenny Gilbert

Shakespeare’s plays have proved remarkably resilient to everything that’s been thrown at them down the years, including – in the case of A Midsummer Night’s Dream with its flowery bo…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 08:52PM
Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Cyrano de Bergerac, Southwark Playhouse by Jenny Gilbert

Given that Edmond Rostand’s 1897 tragicomic verse play Cyrano de Bergerac gave the word "panache" to the English language, it’s an irony that panache is the quality most woefully lacking…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 07:50PM
Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Howard Barker Double Bill, Arcola Theatre by Jenny Gilbert

Two plays for the price of one. What’s not to like? Particularly when they resonate so strongly with each other on a hard, uncompromising theme. Broadly, that theme is love and war, sex an…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 07:31PM
Monday, September 28, 2015

The Sweethearts, Finborough Theatre by Jenny Gilbert

Entertaining our troops overseas has already proved a fruitful subject for drama, and not only for its show-within-a-show potential. Peter Nichols’ Privates on Parade – revived in t…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 07:42AM
Thursday, July 9, 2015

The House of Mirrors & Hearts, Arcola by Jenny Gilbert

Musicals are cheesy by nature, aren’t they? If not cheesy, then picturesque. The cast of Les Mis may be grimy and poor, but they’re picture-postcard poor. Even modern musicals play by th…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 06:20AM
Friday, June 5, 2015

Buckets, Orange Tree Theatre by Jenny Gilbert

“The only way is up” might have been the motto for the Orange Tree over the past year. Last spring, the future couldn’t have looked bleaker for the Richmond producing house when it los…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 05:16AM
Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Hay Fever, Duke of York's Theatre by Jenny Gilbert

‘I sometimes wish we were more normal’ sighs one of the adult Bliss children in Noel Coward’s country-house comedy. But it’s her family’s self-dramatising abnormality that provides…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 03:32AM
Thursday, April 30, 2015

I Wish to Die Singing – Voices from the Armenian Genocide, Finborough by Jenny Gilbert

Agitprop is a term that seems to have dropped out of use. It has too many negative connotations; it smacks of political rant. Yet artistic director Neil McPherson, whose small and feisty Fin…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 02:31AM
Friday, April 24, 2015

Ahnen, Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch, Sadler's Wells by Jenny Gilbert

You’re already in the land of the unpredictable with Pina Bausch. Creating unease was her metier. But when she pulls a gag intended to convince you that something has gone badly wrong on s…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 06:54AM
Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Lampedusa, Soho Theatre by Jenny Gilbert

You might think you know what you’re in for with a play by Anders Lustgarten, winner of the inaugural Harold Pinter Playwright’s Award and current go-to political activist for the Royal …

Linked From The Arts Desk at 07:00PM
Friday, March 20, 2015

The Father, Trafalgar Studios by Jenny Gilbert

This 1887 domestic drama by August Strindberg is rarely seen in London, and Abbey Wright’s new production of Laurie Slade’s new version might have seized the opportunity to give this gri…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 07:00AM
Sunday, March 8, 2015

Charlie's Dark Angel, Drayton Arms Theatre by Jenny Gilbert

The critic James Christopher describes his first stage play as a black comedy, and the opening few moments set out the noir element efficiently enough, if not with any discernable humour. Ch…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 04:21AM
Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Mikvah Project, The Yard, Hackney by Jenny Gilbert

In the beginning was the Word and, not long after, came a need for ritual purification. “When Adam was banished from Eden, he sat in the river that flowed from the garden. Adam immersed in…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 04:08AM
Thursday, February 12, 2015

Gods and Monsters, Southwark Playhouse by Jenny Gilbert

There is indeed something of Frankenstein’s monster about the handsome young gardener, with his flat-top haircut and gym-bulked torso, who has come to mow James Whale’s lawn. The retired…

Linked From The Arts Desk at 04:37AM
Saturday, July 30, 2011
Sunday, April 17, 2011

Diaghilev Festival Coliseum, London by Jenny Gilbert

Some ballets are dead, but they won't lie down

Linked From The Independent at 06:23AM

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