Dear theatre friends,
Perhaps you’ve already heard the good news– National Theatre Live has announced their summer program, available on National Theatre At Home.
Open your calendars:
Beginning June 18th– “Small Island,” an adaptation of Andrea Levy’s Orange Prize-winning novel, being streamed to coincide with Windrush Day— the U.K.’s recent recognition of the extensive Caribbean migration seventy years ago. The Guardian review and others were unanimously rapturous!
June 25th– “A Midsummer’s Night Dream,” the Bridge Theatre’s 2019 production, directed by Olivier and Tony Awards-winning Nicholas Hytner. Read the New York Times’ review and decide for yourself if you don’t actually need to see another production of this perhaps too often presented play. You do!
July 2nd– Lorraine Hansberry, best known for “A Raisin in the Sun,” left drafts of “Les Blancs,” behind when she died at 34; it was then assembled by her husband. This production is directed by Yael Farber (winner of my Award for “Mies Julie”.) Here’s the Guardian review which will ensure you don’t miss this.
July 9th– Terrence Rattigan’s devastating “The Deep Blue Sea,” directed by the young, celebrated Carrie Cracknell. The Guardian review highlights Helen McCrory’s powerful portrayal of Hester– you will not forget this performance, nor the play!
July 16th– Peter Shaffer’s iconic “Amadeus,” first presented in 1979, is accompanied by Southbank Sinfonia in Michael Longhurst’s highly acclaimed production. He gives the music as much focus as the text, to startling effect. Don’t miss!
Not to be overlooked, July 8- 14th, the Old Vic will stream their production of Joe Penhall’s “Mood Music,” starring Ben Chaplin. It’s a moving depiction of an older music mogul taking full credit for a younger, female singer/songwriter’s work– I can feel my fury and frustration rise, just remembering it. Please read The Guardian review — then note the dates.
While on Old Vic’s YouTube site, please look at “The Greatest Wealth.” There’s a video for each decade of the history of the U.K.’s beloved National Health Service, since the 1940s.
I’m loath to recommend a production only available on BBC One (or in the U.S., with a VPN) but Alan Bennett’s “Talking Heads” is a collection of 12 of the most memorable monologues. It will be streaming from June 23rd, starring Lesley Manville, Kristin Scott Thomas, Harriet Walter, Imelda Staunton, among other luminaries. Try to see it.
Closer to home, New York’s Red Bull Theatre will be presenting an effervescent production, live streamed, of “The Government Inspector,” with Michael Urie, in a benefit performance on June 15th, 7:30pm. If you don’t recall seeing this New York Times Critic’s Pick review, read it now– then sign up for a delightful evening.
In closing, do see Signature Theatre’s offering of Anna Deavere Smith’s “Twilight: Los Angeles.” This exploration of the aftermath of the Rodney King killing will feel as if it were written in response to today’s events, although first seen in 1994. You may be interested in the archived New York Times review of that premiere.
More to come…
That’s all for now– as I receive news I’ll pass it along. But don’t completely fill your calendars yet– more shows are continuing to find their way to our screens.
Aren’t we fortunate to be living during this plague and not Sophocles’? Or, are you overwhelmed by choice?
Again, if you discover other theatre-related news– please get in touch: Carol@BestofEdinburgh.org.
And, need I reiterate? I’d like to continue to write because so many have expressed their enjoyment of reading– but I must have content!
Please send other theatre related information, or do try to recall a story you’d like me to post.
Carol Tambor publishes a monthly newsletter, which announces worthy shows coming to New York, along with occasional information about London theatre and, of course, the Edinburgh Fringe.