This would be the stuff of the Horrible Histories book series, if only it were not so exorbitantly fanciful. There are moments in Napoleon Disrobed in which I had little, if any, idea as to what exactly was going on - this deliberately chaotic and riotous production is filled with what the Trump Administration’s Kellyanne Conway would call ‘alternative facts’. Her further clarification as to the meaning of that phrase, ‘additional facts and alternative information’, certainly fits the bill … [Read more...]
Arcola Theatre Off West End London E8 3DL
Arcola presents major artists alongside cutting-edge work from some of the most exciting emerging companies.
Arcola has been a launch pad for artists including Rebecca Lenkiewicz and Alecky Blythe (who had their first plays produced here), Lyndsey Turner, Lucy Kirkwood and Joe Sims.
World-renowned playwrights including Bonnie Greer, Frank McGuinness and Sam Shepard have premiered work at Arcola.
Arcola’s programme is locally engaged and internationally minded. They 'believe that diversity makes for better art, and for a more flourishing arts scene.'
Every year through ArcolaLAB, the Arcola 'provide 26 weeks of free rehearsal space to emerging theatre-makers and artists of colour'.
Two-thirds of the productions in the Arcola's last season 'were led by women as writers, directors and producers, and one-third of our productions are led by diverse artists.'
24 Ashwin Street, Dalston,
London, E8 3DL
The Arcola Theatre is just 2 minutes’ walk from both Dalston Kingsland and Dalston Junction stations, on the London Overground.
Renowned German actress Sarah Alles has been cast in Marion Bott’s Moormaid – an explosive new play about two lost individuals’ search for freedom. Moormaid will mark both Alles and Bott’s UK debuts. Set in Berlin, Moormaid is a thrilling chamber-play about self-destruction and rebirth that attempts to understand the fear currently gripping the European psyche, and the threats that may be posed by our own alienated youth. Bott’s inspiration for Moormaid came in 2014, when she discovered that … [Read more...]
The dystopia came across as more vivid and more prevalent than the utopia in Utopia / Dystopia, a collection of thirteen plays (all of them mercifully short) presented by Brave New Word and hosted by Rory O’Keeffe (yep, double f - his website has this whole spiel about the Irish heritage of O’Keefe / O’Keeffe). O’Keeffe was easy to warm to, particularly in a variation of ‘Would you rather?’ played with a member of the audience. I don’t mean to flatter the guy, but his own routines were firmly in … [Read more...]
Great Apes is a new play by Patrick Marmion directed by RSC and Donmar actor Oscar Pearce (Wolf Hall, Real Thing), based on the novel by Will Self. It is a raucous, surreal modern satire that mixes Self’s famously rich language with subtle simian movement and vocalisations to create a theatrical ‘Planet of the Apes’ crossed with ‘Gulliver’s Travels’. With set and costume design by Sarah Beaton, movement by Jonnie Riordan, lighting by Matt Haskins and sound by Dan Balfour. When Turner … [Read more...]
Heretic Voices is the culmination of a national competition to find the best new writing in monologue form. From the 1,136 submitted scripts, these three exceptional plays were selected by Michael Billington, Lolita Chakrabarti, Monica Dolan and Mel Kenyon. All three are written by women and all three are powerful, emotional, rage-filled works that rail against injustice but contain tenderness, humour and passion. It’s easy to see why these plays were selected, and great to see such simple … [Read more...]
It’s a little like watching one of those chat shows where a guest is asked one question as a starting point. The gregarious personality of the interviewee means the conversation flows very freely, with further interventions and questions from the host kept to a minimum. Except in Hanna, the sole onstage title character, played by Sophie Khan Levy, has no interviewer, and there’s no movie, book or (ahem) theatre play to promote. Indeed, while the story holds more than enough intrigue and interest … [Read more...]
Lynette Linton’s most recent conception #Hashtag Lightie, returning to the Arcola Theatre after a sell-out run earlier this year is a simultaneously far-reaching and concentrated delight, that excels on all fronts. It chronicles the journey of a young mixed race girl, Ella, and her Social Media affection/affliction, as she confusedly attempts to forge her identity online, in the form of her beauty focussed Youtube channel, unaware of the divisions she is causing. It brings to light the issue … [Read more...]