ABR Arts Theatre

Ink (Almeida Theatre) ★★★★★

Jane Sullivan
Thursday, 03 August 2017

Rupert Murdoch is one of those towering but flawed figures of power beloved of dramatists. Shakespeare would have used him, if he’d had a time machine. David Williamson had a go in his play Rupert (2013), and he is reported to be writing a screenplay for a US television mini-series ...

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The Merchant of Venice (Bell Shakespeare) ★★★★★

Andrea Goldsmith
Friday, 21 July 2017

The Merchant of Venice is a troublesome play. I have seen productions that have played up the comic aspects to an absurd and irritating degree while confining Shylock to the stereotype that bears his name. Some interpretations exploit the play as anti-Semitic propaganda ...

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Louis Nowra’s latest play, his first in ten years because apparently and appallingly no major company in Australia has asked him for one, is the third in his semi-autobiographical Lewis trilogy. In Summer of the Aliens (1992), the young Lewis, growing up in housing-commission ...

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Cloud Nine (Sydney Theatre Company) ★★★★

Ian Dickson
Friday, 07 July 2017

Clive, a splendid chappie, has taken up the white man’s burden in darkest Africa and is attempting to bring some British order to the lesser breeds without the law, even though the ungrateful blighters are getting a bit restless. He’s accompanied by that jolly good stick of a wife of his ...

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Merrily We Roll Along (Watch This) ★★1/2

Tim Byrne
Monday, 03 July 2017

Merrily We Roll Along (1981) isn’t Stephen Sondheim’s biggest flop. That honour goes to Anyone Can Whistle (1964), which closed after nine performances. Merrily outlasted it by seven performances, and of the two shows has since gone on to much greater critical acclaim ...

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If you’ve done your homework and you think the answer to the ‘ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything’ is 42, you’d be wrong. You’ve read the wrong book. The actual meaning of life is not to be found in Douglas Adams’s The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy but ...

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Macbeth (Melbourne Theatre Company) ★★★

Andrew Fuhrmann
Tuesday, 13 June 2017

This is Macbeth reimagined as a supernatural-themed action movie for the stage, a high-speed entertainment with explosions and gunplay and plenty of special effects. Macbeth and his fellow Scots scamper about in fatigues, flak jackets, and modern full-dress uniforms, accompanied ...

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It is a truism that great novelists rarely make great playwrights; Henry James tried to conquer the boards to disastrous effect with Guy Domville (1895), and writers from Virginia Woolf to James Joyce have failed to translate their genius for interiority to the stage. Charles Dickens, whose ...

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Minnie & Liraz (Melbourne Theatre Company) ★★★★

Carol Middleton
Friday, 19 May 2017

With unrelenting cheerfulness, bright orange lights shine on a simple set: a row of straight-backed chairs, a tall flower display, and a painting of an elderly woman, prominently displayed. Are we about to witness a funeral? Indeed we are. Slowly, painfully, the ambulant residents ...

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In recent years George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four (first published in 1949) has twice been returned to bestseller lists around the world – in the wake of the United States National Security Agency’s global surveillance scandal, and following Donald Trump Counselor Kellyanne ...

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