wed 28/02/2024

Hampstead Theatre

Out of Season, Hampstead Theatre review - banter as bullying

One island off the coast of Spain has more cultural oomph than all the rest put together. I’m talking about Ibiza, the sun-soaked, music-happy and drug-friendly paradise for anyone in their roaring luved-up twenties who wants a break that will fry...

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Double Feature, Hampstead Theatre review - with directors like these, who needs enemies

It’s awards season in the film world, which means that we’re currently swamped by hyperbolic shows of love and respect – actors and their directors gushing about how each could simply never have reached their creative heights without the other. Of...

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This Much I Know, Hampstead Theatre review - an intellectual game with a slight emotional payload

How do you make a play out of Stalin’s defecting daughter Svetlana, the psycho-economic theories of Daniel Kahneman and a fictionalised version of Derek Black, the son of a leading American white nationalist?Playwright Jonathan Spector, who reveals...

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Rock 'N' Roll, Hampstead Theatre review - exciting music, uneven staging

There is a song by Syd Barrett, founder member of Pink Floyd, called “Golden Hair”. It’s on his album The Madcap Laughs, released in 1970, a couple of years after he left the band, and every time I hear it I feel like I’m falling in love again. It...

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Nineteen Gardens, Hampstead Theatre Downstairs review - intriguing, beautifully observed two-hander tilts power this way and that

A middle-aged man, expensively dressed and possessed of that very specific confidence that only comes from a certain kind of education, a certain kind of professional success, a certain kind of entitlement, talks to a younger woman. Despite the fact...

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To Have and To Hold, Hampstead Theatre review - funny but flawed

There’s only a couple of things you need to know about playwright Richard Bean: he started out as a stand-up comic, and he comes from Hull. Oh, and he wears Hawaiian shirts to press nights. So that’s three things. Oh, and that his masterpiece One...

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Octopolis, Hampstead Theatre review - blue, blue, electric blue

How many hearts does an octopus have? Answer: three. This pub quiz clincher is just one of the many fascinating facts that emerge from Octopolis, Marek Horn’s engrossing 100-minute two-hander which explores the relationship between humans and...

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anthropology, Hampstead Theatre review - AI thriller runs out of code

With more than 20 plays under her belt, San-Francisco based Lauren Gunderson is one of the most produced playwrights in the US. But she’s chosen London to premier her very topical new thriller. It’s a sign of a good writer that they can touch...

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Song from Far Away, Hampstead Theatre review - gentle monologue from a man grappling with grief

Lucky Will Young: the production of the Simon Stephens monologue Song from Far Away that he is delivering at the Hampstead Theatre is directed by Kirk Jameson, not Ivo van Hove.The modish Dutch director of the initial UK staging, seen at the Young...

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Stumped, Hampstead Theatre review - Beckett and Pinter, waiting for Doggo

Much of cricket comprises waiting – you wait on the boundary to hear news of the toss, you wait your turn to bat, you heed the call of your batting partner to wait to see if a run is on, you wait for the rain to stop. A friend once told me that he...

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Re-Member Me, Hampstead Theatre review - wittily staged but poignant lip-syncing

Lip-syncing has become the hobby of many a young TikToker, but only an intrepid professional would contemplate using the technique to play Hamlet. Or rather, to “play” some of the knighted thespians and stars who have portrayed him. Dickie Beau is...

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First Person: playwright Joe White on how he came to write his Hampstead Theatre hit

Before I knew – or realised – I wanted to write about alcoholism in my play Blackout Songs (premiered last autumn at the Hampstead Downstairs and moving this weekend to the mainstage), I wanted to write about love and memory...

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