Saturday, April 13

Tag: Finborough Theatre

JAB – Finborough Theatre
London

JAB – Finborough Theatre

Married for 29 years, Anne and Don think they know each other well. They dance to their favourite music, share too many bottles of wine, muddle along in their empty-nest lives. Anne is an administrator with the NHS, Don runs a niche vintage shop that makes little money, leaving Anne as the main breadwinner. It works for them - until the pandemic hits and the country goes into lockdown. As Covid ravages the world, it also shows up the cracks in the marriage. Anne continues to work long hours from home while Don has to close his shop and lazes around reading the Daily Mail and soaking up far-right conspiracy theories.  It's just the flu, he insists. It will go away in a month, he says, parroting what he's read in the tabloids. Irritated by his increasing dependence on Anne, Don's sexis...
Birthright – Finborough Theatre
London

Birthright – Finborough Theatre

Continuing their re-discovery season, Finborough Theatre presents Birthright by T. C. Murray. Written in 1910 and staged at the Abbey Theatre in Dublin that same year, it was a huge success. Set around the same time in rural Ireland, a farming family comes to conflict over the different ways the two sons are being drawn in their own lives. Shane, the second son, has an innate talent for farm work, often finding solutions to farm challenges more swiftly than his father, Bat. Yet, despite this, the farm and its birthright were never destined to be his. He has arranged to emigrate to America. On this particular evening, we find ourselves at the family table, where a freshly delivered trunk rests, symbolising the second son's future far away – a "spare," borrowing a phrase from recent UK t...
The Return of Benjamin Lay – Finborough Theatre
London

The Return of Benjamin Lay – Finborough Theatre

Can one make a statement and beg to be brought back to the fold, renouncing all principles? Can one's desire to be accepted be stronger than one's principles? The Return of Benjamin Lay, written in collaboration between Naomi Wallace and Marcus Rediker, under the direction of Ron Daniels, and with acting by Mark Povinelli as Benjamin Lay, is a striking piece about a very interesting historical character. The treatment Povinelli gives the character is on its own, remarkable, and hits all the right nerves. The stage of the Finborough Theatre is made almost bare, with the windows letting in the noise and images of the cars from outside, and from the place where this reviewer was sitting, the sun was hitting in the faces of the audience. The set design, by Riccardo Hernandez and Isobel ...
A Brief List of Everyone Who Died – Finborough Theatre
London

A Brief List of Everyone Who Died – Finborough Theatre

“There is no me in me without the way I love you”. A light, convivial family atmosphere transitions into a dark comedy as Graciela’s (Vivia Font) parents figure out how to tell her that their dog has died. Denial and questioning turns into blame and Graciela develops some sort of fear of her loved ones dying. Members of the cast take it in turns delineating the time passing as Gracie ages. Jacob Marx Rice’s script is mischievously witty and exuberant one moment before revealing undercurrents of disquiet and grief.  Throughout the play, people in Gracie’s life die, and she struggles to deal with each one, until it eventually becomes her turn. What I loved about this play was its earnestness and the acute portrayal of grappling with something beyond your control. Font was emotion...
The Retreat – Finborough Theatre
London

The Retreat – Finborough Theatre

Jason Sherman's The Retreat follows the dreams of Rachel (Jill Winternitz), a Hebrew school teacher whose passion for writing was re-enlightened from a dare to try one more time. After being accepted on a writer's retreat led by an independent film production studio, David (Max Rinehart) falls in love with her script about a false Messiah but upon her arrival falls in love with her too. David's business partner Jeff (Michael Feldsher) is wrapped up in the current obsession of slashers knowing it'll help expand their business but David can't get behind work he doesn't feel passionate about and walks away from Jeff to help produce Rachel's script. In an effort to bring David back, Jeff meddles with Rachel's script to see if she is a wannabe writer or a true writer at heart. Rachel becomes v...
<strong>Salt-Water Moon – Finborough Theatre</strong>
London

Salt-Water Moon – Finborough Theatre

David French's Salt-Water Moon is set in 1926, when Newfoundland was still part of the British Empire, only becoming the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador in 1949. Having won a slew of awards since its premiere in Toronto in 1984, the play has since become a classic of Canadian theatre. It's a moon-lit night in the isolated Newfoundland community of Coley's Point, and young Mary Snow is gazing at the stars as she awaits the return of her fiancé, the wealthy Jerome McKenzie. Due to marry Jerome the following month, she is startled by the sudden return of her former love, Jacob Mercer, who left suddenly and without even saying goodbye twelve months previously. Mary cannot forgive Jacob for leaving and not writing to her in the intervening months.  But, as more is reveal...
The Coral – Finborough Theatre
London

The Coral – Finborough Theatre

Collide Theatre’s adaptation of The Coral originally written by Georg Kaiser is as direct as it is puzzling. The Millionaire, cleverly represented with a red face, and a portrait covering his face in red, makes him synonymous with other powerful, rich men like Trump or Elon Musk. He sets up monthly meetings with struggling individuals, listening to their cases before donating generous amounts. Yet this is done to ease his conscience, as he still holds onto insurmountable wealth to protect him from the horror of poverty that he experienced as a child. Kaiser’s political stance soon becomes clear as the antagonistic Gentleman in Grey confronts the Millionaire, asking him to sign a treaty that ends the divide between rich and poor. Hints at a stylised, expressionistic world are conveyed o...
Distinguished Villa – Finborough Theatre
London

Distinguished Villa – Finborough Theatre

"Refined" is the word around which Kate O'Brien's 1926 play hinges. Mabel Hemworth is unrelenting in her control of her immaculately cleaned suburban home and her downtrodden husband, Natty. A woman claiming permanent illness and anxiety, frigid and childless, she is constantly on edge and desperate not to attract the negative judgement of the neighbours on their quiet avenue in Brixton. Even her husband's singing along to a record she regards as outrageous due to what she considers to be racy lyrics. She has also ruled over the life of her sister, Gwen, a young woman seeking escape from this situation through marriage to the unremarkable John. Mabel represents the tied-down morals of the Victorian era, with even vague references to "issues of the night" causing her to have a fit of the v...
Two Ukrainian Plays at The Finborough Theatre in connection with Worldwide Play Readings: Belarus and Ukraine
NEWS

Two Ukrainian Plays at The Finborough Theatre in connection with Worldwide Play Readings: Belarus and Ukraine

In September 2020, the Belarus Worldwide Readings Project organised hundreds of international theatre companies, groups, schools, and individuals, to present readings, videos, and discussions of Andrei Kureichik’s new play Insulted. Belarus(sia), in solidarity with the people and theatre companies of Belarus. In late February 2022, the Worldwide Ukrainian Play Readings Project, was formed by John Freedman (a writer and translator, who first translated Insulted.Belarus(sia) into English), and Maksym Kurochkin, a Ukrainian playwright and leader of the new Theatre of Playwrights in Kyiv. Supported and funded by CITD (The Centre for International Theatre Development), they commissioned 23 Ukrainian playwrights to create new historical plays to be performed around the world to raise money f...
Darkie Armo Girl – Finborough Theatre
London

Darkie Armo Girl – Finborough Theatre

Karine Bedrossian stuns in her fast-paced one-woman play. Her rollercoaster of a journey begins as a sprightly eight-year-old with a passion for dance who struggles with a lack of belonging and isolation due to her Armenian heritage. As she grows up and as her unhealed wounds take hold, she relentlessly searches for some kind of peace or fulfilment amongst chaos. Bedrossian’s writing is excellent with witty dialogue, dark humour, and a strong narrative thread. It is almost like reading a diary, with its intimacy and unabashed truthfulness. The events are retold in an unanticipated and sporadic way, much like Karine’s buzzing character which is exciting and dizzying to watch. She is emotionally raw and engaging without any indulgence or pretence. There is an honesty and concentration...