(Hedy Weiss’s article appeared in the Chicago Sun-Times 5/31.)
A classic marital farce ingeniously complicated by historical layering and virtuosic dual role-playing. And a beguiling comic love letter to the American theater — from its Yiddish roots to its long obsession with the siren call that lures stage actors to Hollywood.
(Robert Gore-Langton’s article appeared in the Times of London May 31.)
We know the plays, but how much do we really know the man? As Simon Callow sets off on tour in a new one-man show, Shakespeare: The Man from Stratford, we felt it was time to put the Shakespeare industry to the test. After all, the Bard is probably the cause of more tree-felling than all other dead authors put together. Every minuscule aspect of his output is pored over by researchers and academics, the answers buried in impossibly dense books that suck the blood out of the playwright.
(Lyn Gardner’s review appeared in the Guardian, 5/28.)
The sweet sound of birdsong serenades the ear. The glow from the lamp on the Welsh dresser is cosy. The child waking from a nightmare should be easily soothed back to sleep by a fairytale or a lullaby. But when young Joan (Eleanor Bailey) wakes in the night at her uncle and aunt's house, she hears and sees things no child would forget. She feels the blood beneath her feet; she sees her uncle beating a child with a steel rod; she hears the cries of humans caged like animals in a lorry. Aunt Harper cannot meet her young niece's unclouded eye as she tries to soothe away the fears and give a convincing explanation of the horrors that are taking place.
(Story from the LA Times, 5/28, by Sherry Stern; it links to Vanity Fair photos.)
Law tells the magazine his earliest theater memory: My mom and dad used to be very involved in an amateur dramatic society in Southeast London, and I remember being taken to a theater there where they were doing a production. And I remember playing backstage while my mom was painting the set for the play that she was also directing, I think. I was always fascinated by this dark, slightly eerie, and exciting place.
(Peter Crawley’s article appeared in the Irish Times, 5/27.)
“We shed as we pick up,” Septimus consoles, “like travellers who must carry everything in our arms, and what we let fall will be picked up by those behind.” In Stoppard’s demanding and hugely rewarding drama of ideas, the characters who shed and those that pick up both inhabit a Derbyshire country estate, separated by two different centuries.
(Michael Billington's article appeared in the Guardian, 5/28.)
I was slightly grudging in my praise when Howard Davies first directed Arthur Miller's 1947 play at the National 10 years ago. Now Davies has recreated his production, with a new cast, and it is time to bring out the superlatives. Not only is the acting tremendous and every visual detail precise, Davies also makes you realise Miller's play is a portrait of a society as well as of a flawed individual.
(Hedy Weiss’s article appeared in the Chicago Sun-Times, 5/27.)
Karel Capek, the Czech writer who, along with Franz Kafka, may have been one of the most prescient artists of the early 20th century (he also is credited with inventing the term "robot"), died of natural causes in 1938 at age 48. Had he lived even a few years longer, he would have been swallowed up in a Nazi concentration camp. Unquestionably he saw the catastrophe looming over Europe.
What better place to show off your new jewelry collection than at the world premiere of Sex and the City 2? Liza Minnelli, who has a memorable guest spot in the much-anticipated film, took to the blue carpet in N.Y.C. Monday night decked out in bling from her new limited-edition HSN collection. “Being an entertainer has provided me the ability to amass a wonderful wardrobe designed by fashion’s brightest stars,” Liza says in a statement. “I am excited to work with HSN in launching The Liza Collection and to have the opportunity to share my favorite looks with millions of women who want to look fabulous and feel like a star!” The Liza Collection will feature limited-run apparel and jewelry inspired by the star’s trademark style, including sequined separates, signature flowy pants and jewels modeled after pieces in her own collection. The Liza Collection will launch on HSN on June 30 at 10 PM EST, with prices ranging from $40-$90. So far, we are loving the old-Hollywood glam of Liza’s jewelry. Visit HSN.com to see more of Liza’s designs. Tell us: Will you buy Liza Minnelli’s HSN collection of jewels and apparel? –Andrea DeSimone
(Susan King’s article appeared in the LA Times, 5/26.)
Rarely does one describe a 79-year-old man as "boyish" (and actually mean it), but the phrase fits Robert Morse like a comfortable pair of shoes. His hair may be gray, but the impish personality, young countenance and modified Beatles haircut still remain from when he catapulted to Broadway stardom and his first Tony Award nearly 50 years ago in the Frank Loesser-Abe Burrows musical "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying."
(Dominic Maxwell’s article appeared in the Times of London, 5/26.)
The last time Henry VIII played at the Globe was in 1613, when the production’s cannon shot burnt the place to the ground. But it’s not just a fear of getting burnt again that has kept the new Globe from producing Shakespeare’s late history play until now. Co-written with John Fletcher, it’s a sprawling tale in which Henry himself is largely obscured by the web of political intrigue that is spun around him. If it’s not had a major revival since Greg Doran’s RSC production in 1996, that’s because, frankly, it’s no Hamlet. It sprawls, it circumnavigates, it gets bogged down.