I am told by friends (and enemies) that I have a tendency to drone on. And I am like the proverbial kid in the sweet shop when it comes to London culture.
So the below is an attempt to distil the best of what is on now and what is coming up in the world of theatre and art. Nothing too obscure and largely big venues with plenty of tickets.
1. The Ferryman at the Gielgud Theatre. There are only a couple more weeks until the new cast takes over but the play is bullet proof so it shouldn’t matter too much. Just see it.
2. Oslo at the Harold Pinter Theatre. Sold out at the National but transferring to the Harold Pinter. This shouldn’t work – a straight narrative of the negotiations that led to the Oslo Accord between Israel and the PLO – but it does and is bloody magnificent.
3. Knives in Hens at the Donmar Warehouse. There are a few tickets left for the remainder of the run. A sparse exploration of language and knowledge in Medieval England. Modern classic.
4. The End of Hope at the Soho Theatre. I saw this at the Orange Tree. A two hander which set in Northern Ireland by David Ireland and directed by a student amazingly. Just 60 mins and cheap as chips. It is hilarious and cutting. Highly recommended.
5. Network at the National. High expectations but should be justified.
6. Young Marx at the Bridge Theatre. The Bridge’s first offering. I have banged on about this before but I am v. excited.
7. Albion at the Almeida Theatre. Mike Bartlett’s (he who wrote the lines that have you shouting at the telly when Dr Foster is on) latest offering. A state of the nation promise.
8. Glengarry Glen Ross at the Playhouse Theatre. Mamet’s shouty modern classic with a stellar cast and Sam Yates given the director’s chair.
9. The Birthday Party at the Harold Pinter Theatre. Pinter’s guest house to avoid with a fascinating cast and Ian Rickson directing.
10. Gundog at the Royal Court Theatre. I pretty much book anything that looks even vaguely interesting at the Royal Court, Orange Tree, Arcola and Young Vic. This is a guaranteed way to see stunning theatre without paying fancy West End prices for a seat only fit for hobbits. I can’t tell you why Gundog is on this list. I just have a feeling.
1. Cezanne Portraits at the National Portrait Gallery. 50 Cezanne Portraits. There is nothing in art that could top this. Other than 50 Cezanne still lifes. Or 50 Cezanne landscapes. From 26th October.
2. Opera Passion, Power and Politics at the V&A. Story of opera through 7 premieres across 400 years from the V and A curators who are shit hot right now. From 30th September.
3. Monochrome: Paintings in Black and White at the National Gallery. Where will they go with this then? could and should be brilliant. From 30th October.
4. Impressionists in London at Tate Britain. Expect big crowds for some of the big names. From 2nd November.
5. Jasper Johns at the Royal Academy. I haven’t been yet but looking forward to seeing the retrospective of one of the big daddies of US C20 modern art. On now.