Monday, July 15

Tag: Abigail Graham

The Merchant of Venice – Shakespeare’s Globe
London

The Merchant of Venice – Shakespeare’s Globe

The current rise of antisemitism around the world gives extra resonance and relevance to Shakespeare's 16th Century play on usury, religious conflict, revenge and the manipulation of justice. Abigail Graham's direction packs a serious punch, with a stellar cast who draw out every nuance of the text. The claustrophobic atmosphere of the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse is brilliantly heightened in this beautiful candlelit production set in the present day, but which could relate to any era. Young Bassanio is a spendthrift and hedonist, partying with his buddies and going through money as though there's no tomorrow.  Needing cash to pursue his wooing of the rich heiress, Portia, he turns to his friend, the merchant, Antonio, who has bailed him out previously. Antonio agrees and asks Shylock,...
Aladdin – Lyric Hammersmith
London

Aladdin – Lyric Hammersmith

Panto's resurgence in recent years has brought new attention to a format which often is a child's introduction to live theatre.  Vikki Stone's re-imagining of the traditional Aladdin keeps the plot (well, not that there is much plot and what there is makes little sense) and brings in modern elements of beatboxing, references to TikTok, current politics and celebrity gossip. The leads wear tracksuits, the princess is feisty and unwilling to be married off to just anyone or at all but the villain is still evil and the good guys win in the end.  The show starts with a song about how they all know they are just pretending because they are in panto. The audience does already know that, obviously, but it's a very on-the-nose statement to start by challenging the high level of suspe...