All stories by Arifa Akbar on BroadwayStars

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Mike Bartlett on Albion, Brexit and Covid: 'national identity is critical to coming out of this' by Arifa Akbar

The drama first staged after the EU referendum has taken on new relevance and is being broadcast by the BBC. Its creator reflects on the ‘emotional weight’ of Britishness Mike Bartlett…

Linked From The Guardian at 10:36AM
Sunday, August 2, 2020

Scene changers: the theatre-makers with radical ideas to combat racism by Arifa Akbar

Many black theatre-makers say they feel unwelcome in major venues. Are some performances for black-only audiences the answer? And how can a play spur white audiences to confront their own bi…

Linked From The Guardian at 10:36AM
Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Online Porch Sitting review – collective catharsis to guide us through the dark by Arifa Akbar

Hallowed quiet gives way to personal laments in an interactive re-creation of house-front chatter Lockdown culture: the best theatre and dance online ‘Some of our best conversations are in…

Linked From The Guardian at 03:24PM
Thursday, July 23, 2020

On-screen theatre let me see plays I could never afford. I’m thrilled it’s back | Arifa Akbar by Arifa Akbar

I bristle at the idea that plays are ‘not the real thing’ unless they are live – I fell in love with Shakespeare and Beckett through televised performances Every theatregoer I know is …

Linked From The Guardian at 04:12AM
Monday, July 20, 2020

As Waters Rise review – dystopian climate drama feels close to home by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineFloods plunge Britain into a state of emergency in an engrossing audio play performed by 14- to 18-year-olds Ben Weatherill’s audio play is set in the year 2025 when a flo…

Linked From The Guardian at 11:24AM
Monday, July 6, 2020

Toast review – a fresh twist on Nigel Slater's childhood tales by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineThe chef’s mouth-watering memoir is now a ‘part radio play, part animated film’ in which even a biscuit is a trigger for grief Nigel Slater’s feted memoir has been re…

Linked From The Guardian at 05:54PM
Sunday, July 5, 2020

'Theatre was my first love': Bernardine Evaristo on her NHS play, Twitter trolls and 'porny' posts by Arifa Akbar

The Booker-winning writer has returned to the stage, penning a drama defending the NHS. She talks about ‘bittersweet’ success – and getting caught up in attacks on Nicola Sturgeon Bern…

Linked From The Guardian at 10:12AM
Thursday, July 2, 2020

Birdsong review – innovative lockdown staging of Faulks’s war saga by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineThis socially distanced adaptation of Sebastian Faulks’s novel cleverly moves between times and places, with only an author narration striking a wayward note The story and …

Linked From The Guardian at 08:12AM
Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Hamilton review – Broadway hit is now a breathtaking screen sensation by Arifa Akbar

Disney+Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical is smart, witty, funky and leaves us reflecting on America’s past and future Hamilton was hailed as revolutionary theatre in 2015, with its rapping 18…

Linked From The Guardian at 01:54PM
Monday, June 29, 2020

'I've threatened to break the rules and kiss her': Claire Foy and Matt Smith on acting in lockdown by Arifa Akbar

They’re separated by a two-metre stick but their chemistry is as strong as ever. The Crown stars on their socially-distanced take on Lungs; lockdown diets and naked drawings Claire Foy and…

Linked From The Guardian at 10:36AM
Friday, June 26, 2020

Nixon in Agony review – Berkoff gets inside disgraced president's head by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineRichard Nixon’s downfall may be resonant with our age, but in Adam Donen’s experimental sound dramatisation the psychological noise drowns out the story Hottest front-roo…

Linked From The Guardian at 11:24AM

The Last Five Years review – poignant deconstruction of a marriage by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineThere are astute lyrics and energetic performances in this tale of a relationship, from first night to marriage to break-up Hottest front-room seats: the best theatre and dan…

Linked From The Guardian at 06:06AM
Thursday, June 25, 2020

Rush review – Rupert Everett searches for the meaning of monogamy by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineA gay love triangle leads to a generational battle over queer identity in this beguiling, Zoom-broadcast comedy of manners Hottest front-room seats: the best theatre and danc…

Linked From The Guardian at 02:36PM
Wednesday, June 17, 2020

The Protest review – superb set of dramas for the Black Lives Matter movement by Arifa Akbar

Available onlinePain, anger and everyday racism are examined in this powerful series of short films from the Bush theatre A week ago, the Bush theatre asked six writers for their dramatised …

Linked From The Guardian at 09:42AM
Monday, June 15, 2020

WeRNotVirus review – responses to a pandemic of racism by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineTen short plays responding to the rise in racist attacks since the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak have a cumulative power Hottest front-room seats: the best theatre and d…

Linked From The Guardian at 08:18AM
Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Continuity review – gripping study of Irish republican terror by Arifa Akbar

Available online In Gerry Moynihan’s monologue, recorded at the Finborough in 2017, Paul Kennedy gives a magnificent performance Gerry Moynihan’s debut play begins in a bustling Northern…

Linked From The Guardian at 05:03PM
Tuesday, June 9, 2020

'There is a growing unease': will Covid-19 damage theatre's progress in diversity? by Arifa Akbar

It would be a tragedy if the lockdown left drama narrower and risk-averse. Our chief critic hears from Kwame Kwei-Armah, Indhu Rubasingham, Lynette Linton and Rachel De-lahay As protests ove…

Linked From The Guardian at 01:42PM
Monday, June 8, 2020

Adventures with the Painted People review – Greig's romance has irresistible spark by Arifa Akbar

BBC Radio 3A Roman soldier falls under the spell of a Pictish woman in this poetic radio play that holds up a mirror to modern Britain Hottest front-room seats: the best theatre and dance to…

Linked From The Guardian at 01:48AM
Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Pass Over review – Spike Lee directs a supremely masterful tragedy by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineLee’s 2018 film of Antoinette Nwandu’s powerful play, written as a response to the shooting of Trayvon Martin, resonates after the George Floyd killing Two homeless men i…

Linked From The Guardian at 02:12PM
Tuesday, June 2, 2020

A School for Fools review – Belarus Free Theatre's audacious lockdown challenge by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineThe company’s years of operating underground inform a dynamic approach to online drama that goes far beyond talking heads Belarus Free Theatre began rehearsing an adaptatio…

Linked From The Guardian at 03:03PM
Thursday, May 28, 2020

Good Girl review – one woman's quest to inhabit her body by Arifa Akbar

Soho Theatre On DemandNaomi Sheldon fuses comedy with candour as she tracks a woman’s sexual journey from liberated teen to unfulfilled adult ‘One is not born, but rather becomes, a wom…

Linked From The Guardian at 06:54PM
Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Groomed review – horrifyingly honest study of abuser and abused by Arifa Akbar

Available onlinePatrick Sandford makes an astonishing dramatisation of childhood abuse and its consequences over a lifetime in this eloquent film In 2016, Patrick Sandford performed an autob…

Linked From The Guardian at 02:32PM
Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Unprecedented review – making gripping drama out of corona crisis by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineHeadlong’s superb series explores lockdown life, with a cast including Alison Steadman, Katherine Parkinson, Lennie James and Gemma Arterton A week before the Covid-19 lock…

Linked From The Guardian at 08:54AM
Monday, May 25, 2020

Anno Domino review – marital woe and toxic politics in Ayckbourn's lockdown play by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineThe playwright and his wife, actor Heather Stoney, play all eight parts – from 70-somethings to teenagers – in his 84th drama Alan Ayckbourn’s hefty oeuvre lingers on t…

Linked From The Guardian at 01:06PM

James Graham on This House: 'I'm writing a sort-of sequel – with an unlikely hero' by Arifa Akbar

As his parliamentary epic is streamed for National Theatre at Home, the playwright discusses politics of the past and present – and the future of theatre The best theatre and dance to wat…

Linked From The Guardian at 05:24AM
Sunday, May 24, 2020

Party Skills for the End of the World review – a wild night out … without leaving the sofa by Arifa Akbar

Manchester international festivalBooze, music and martial-arts lessons are punctuated by existential musings in this delightfully strange virtual blowout Hottest front-room seats: best theat…

Linked From The Guardian at 09:12AM
Tuesday, May 19, 2020

David Nicholls: 'I crave to see people touching, kissing and fighting on screen' by Arifa Akbar

As his novel The Understudy is turned into a radio play starring Stephen Fry, the writer talks about his own failed acting career – and what dramas will be like after the coronavirus Long …

Linked From The Guardian at 11:24AM

Love, Loss and What I Wore review – all dressed up by the Ephron sisters by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineA starry cast muse on first bras, prom dresses, marriage and motherhood in Nora and Delia Ephron’s magnificent celebration of clothes – and life Hottest front-room seats…

Linked From The Guardian at 09:12AM
Sunday, May 17, 2020

What Do We Need To Talk About? review – addictive family drama by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineThe Apple siblings from Richard Nelson’s quartet of plays return on a Zoom call to talk about life in lockdown Hottest front-room seats: best theatre and dance online For t…

Linked From The Guardian at 10:24AM
Thursday, May 14, 2020

Midnight Your Time review – Diana Quick's quietly tragic portrait of motherhood by Arifa Akbar

Available onlineThe story of a woman in London trying desperately to connect online with her daughter in Palestine suits these isolated times well The best arts and entertainment during self…

Linked From The Guardian at 07:06AM
Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Midnight Your Time: Diana Quick on motherhood and her 'empty nest' drama by Arifa Akbar

Despite a knee injury, the actor’s lockdown has been productive – she stars in the Donmar’s online play about a mother’s relationship with her daughter Hottest front-room seats: bes…

Linked From The Guardian at 10:12AM

All that Chat

2019-2020 BROADWAY SEASON
Oct 06: Slave Play
Feb 01: The Minutes
TBA: Blue