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Andrew Fuhrmann

Andrew Fuhrmann

Andrew Fuhrmann reviews books and theatre. He is currently dance critic for the Age newspaper.

Andrew Fuhrmann reviews 'Quicksilver' by Nicolas Rothwell

December 2016, no. 387 29 November 2016
Quicksilver begins in magniloquence, like the prophet Isaiah. It was the cold midwinter season, we are told, when Nicolas Rothwell began his days of journeying, driving west from Papunya in the Northern Territory towards Marble Bar in Western Australia. ‘The roads were empty: for the best part of a week I saw no trace of man and his works.’ As he drove, he thought about the last expedition of ... (read more)

Uncle Vanya (Red Stitch Theatre)

ABR Arts 21 November 2016
When is it useful for an Australian production of Chekhov to use Russian accents? What does it do to the music of Chekhov, the rhythm and flow of his brisk conversations and long grandiose speeches? And what is the symbolism of such a decision? In this new production of Uncle Vanya (1899), directed by Nadia Tass, not only are the cast all decked out in nineteenth-century costumes and gathered aro ... (read more)

Two Dogs, Dark Chorus, and Lady Eats Apple (Melbourne Festival)

ABR Arts 14 October 2016
Well, it wasn’t the usual demure Melbourne Festival crowd that piled into the Merlyn Theatre for the opening of Life and Opinions of Two Dogs (★★★1/2): the local expat Chinese community was out in force, and the place was buzzing. Two Dogs follows the adventures of a couple of country mutts – played by Liu Xiaoye and Wang Yin – who leave home to seek fame and fortune in the big city. ... (read more)

Andrew Fuhrmann reviews 'Culture' by Terry Eagleton

October 2016, no. 385 26 September 2016
No one should be surprised that Terry Eagleton has written yet another book about the excesses of academic postmodernism. Railing against the pretensions and deceptions and phony jargon of postmodernism has been a favourite sport of his for more than twenty years. In this latest book, Culture, his specific target is that sinister creeping project, cultural studies, a conceptual field which current ... (read more)

The Mill on the Floss (Theatre Works and OpticNerve)

ABR Arts 05 August 2016
Everyone agrees that the end of George Eliot's The Mill on the Floss is a disappointment. Suddenly and without much ceremony Eliot has Maggie Tulliver and her brother Tom drowned in a flood. It's a finale that has baffled and frustrated readers for more than a century and half. Can anything be salvaged from this shocking twist? Director Tanya Gerstle has a solution, and it's a good one. Using an ... (read more)

SHIT (fortyfivedownstairs)

ABR Arts 09 May 2016
Patricia Cornelius has a passion for putting unlovely characters on stage. It has almost become an end in itself. Here she chooses, as her anti-social subjects, three violent, foul-mouthed women, all from broken families or foster homes, all victims of sexual and physical abuse, all bruised down to their moral core. Billy (Nicci Wilks), a brawler and a bawler, picks fights wherever she can, alway ... (read more)

Romeo and Juliet (Bell Shakespeare)

ABR Arts 04 April 2016
Everything, it seems, depends on Juliet: for nothing can be ill, if she be well cast. And if she not be well cast? The question is an idle one, because in Kelly Paterniti we have an excellent Juliet. She is vibrant and original. Whatever faults this new Bell Shakespeare production may have, in her they are redeemed. Even so, I might have wished it was not Romeo and Juliet. In the last two years, ... (read more)

Andrew Fuhrmann reviews 'Young Eliot' by Robert Crawford

December 2015, no. 377 26 November 2015
This long-anticipated first volume of Robert Crawford's biography of T.S. Eliot, the first with permission from the Eliot estate to quote the poet's correspondence and unpublished work, highlights the Young Eliot as – not least in the achievement of his poetry – always an Old Eliot. And yet the picture of Eliot as a child and adolescent is detailed. In Young Eliot we get masses of information, ... (read more)

Dreamers (fortyfivedownstairs)

ABR Arts 12 November 2014
It is a romance of simplicity and much tenderness. There are two people, and they are in love. Their love is tested, but hope triumphs in the end. Anne (Helen Morse) is in her sixties, a grandmother, still doing piece work to support herself while babysitting for her daughter. She begins a relationship with Majid (Yomal Rajasinghe), a much younger man of a different race, an immigrant who is out ... (read more)

Andrew Fuhrmann is Critic of the Month

September 2014, no. 364 01 September 2014
When did you first write for ABR? May 2012, when I reviewed Thomas Bernhard’s The Histrionic at the Malthouse. Which critics most impress you? Dozens of critics impress me, but the critic who made the greatest impression is John Dryden. Everything began with Dryden. It was his Essay of Dramatic Poesy (1668) that first inspired me to write about the theatre. Through Dryden I discovered a way o ... (read more)
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