The Mercury Theatre’s production of Clybourne Park by Bruce Norris will tour the UK starting at the Richmond Theatre from 25th – 30th April 2016. This razor-sharp satire lifts the lid on race and real estate in a fictional Chicago neighbourhoood. The swinging sixties are just around the corner as a black family move into a suburban white enclave, triggering all too predivtable mutterings from the neighbours. Fifty years on, we return to the same house in 2009 as gentification moves in and the roles are reversed. Acclaimed by critics and audiences alike since its debut on Broadway in 2009, Clybourne Park took the West End by storm following a sold out run at the Royal Court Theatre in London. It has been awarded Best Play at the Olivier Awards, the Evening Standard Best Play Award, the South Bank Sky Arts Theatre Award, Critics’ Circle Best Play Award and the Tony Award … Read more
James Dacre takes full advantage of the play’s many moods and shifts of emphasis and style, with the result that the evening is rambunctious and thoroughly engaging: something like a political roller-coaster ride. This is a play where it is hard to work out who the real villain might be – there are a number of contenders for that appellation. But the real benefit of Dacre’s production is that the characters get full value, and what rich and rewarding characters they turn out to be.
Following a sell-out season at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, Claire Van Kampen’s new play Farinelli And The King will transfer to London’s Duke Of York’s Theatre for a strictly limited season commencing on September 14, 2015. Many of the cast of the original production will return to reprise their roles including award-winning actor Mark Rylance as King Philippe V of Spain, Sam Crane as Farinelli, Huss Harblya as Dr Jose Cervi, Meoldy Grove as Isabella Farnese, Colin Hurley as Metastasio and Edward Peel as De la Cuadra. The singing roles will be shared by Iestyn Davies and Rupert Enticknap. Set in eighteenth-century Spain, Claire van Kampen’s moving and mesmerising new play tells the intriguing true story of Farinelli, once the world’s most famous castrato and one of the greatest celebrities of his time, and his decision to trade fame and fortune in the opera-houses of Europe for a life of … Read more
It is a slight, but quite beautiful, play, perfectly suited to the intimate grandeur of the space, and quite intoxicating, so perfectly judged is everything about it. . The gifted Sam Crane takes on the acting burden of Farinelli , but when it comes time to sing, he is either joined onstage or replaced there by Purefoy, costumed precisely to match Crane. Purefoy has a strong, rich and agile counter-tenor. He is a delight to hear.
It’s a symphony of wit and wisdom wrapped up in a puzzle, a puzzle which is shattered and then, like a fiendishly difficult jigsaw puzzle, is put back together piece by piece. There are no unanswered questions at the end, no conundrums to ponder about the narrative. Stoppard ensures that everything works and that the humour and humanity of the piece is the lasting impression.
Dromgoole’s production is detailed and clear, effortlessly moving from the sombre and macabre world of Beatrice-Joanna to the lighter, albeit equally odd, world of Isabella. Hattie Morahan is sheer delight as Beatrice-Joanna. Sarah MacRae is a luminous actress and her work here as Isabella adds further to the lustrous work she delivers.