The Blue Room

Arthur Schnitzler described Reigen, his loose series of sexual sketches, as "completely unprintable, " and indeed its premiere in 1921 spurred an obscenity suit. It was only when Max Ophuls made his famous film in 1950 that the work became better known as La Ronde. Now David Hare has reset these circular scenes of love and betrayal in the present day, with a cast of two actors playing a succession of characters whose sexual lives enmesh like a...

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Acting Up

After writing a monologue on the subject of Israel and Palestine, David Hare forced himself to make his debut on the professional stage at the age of fifty-one. When his success at London's austere Royal Court theatre led to an invitation to appear in New York at a somewhat flashier Broadway venue, Hare was transformed from a shadowy playwright into an actor alone on the stage every night for ninety minutes.Hare's hilarious diary of...

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Gethsemane

Nothing is more important to a modern political party than fund-raising. But the values of the donors can't always coincide with the professed beliefs of the party. And family scandal within the cabinet has the potential to throw both the money-raisers and the money-spenders into chaos. This richly imagined ensemble play about British public life looks at the way business, media and politics are now intertwined to nobody's advantage, as, in an...

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Murmuring Judges

I read this play a couple of months ago, but I've only just come to review it now. Mainly because, at the time, I was partly left unsatisfied with how the whole play ended.My biggest problem, I'd say, is the pacing. It takes a little while to get into when you're reading it alone - but once it gets into its own, it goes, and you're interested, just interested, in how everything is going to turn out. But then the next problem occurs - you...

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Murder in Samarkand

A BBC 4 radio play written by playwright David Hare. Based on the memoir Murder on Samarkand: A British Ambassador's Controversial Defiance of Tyranny in the War on Terror by Craig Murray, former British diplomat to Uzbekistan. First aired Saturday 20th February 2010.Link to download and/or listen:http://craigmurray.org.uk/books/murde...Cast and crew: Craig Murray …… David TennantBax/Safayev …… Jonathan...

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Fanshen

Haha, you must give David Hare credit! One of the few writers to seamlessly balance a piece both as a historical document and as a dramatic work through which his own aesthetic must permeate. Disbelievers will say he lays a bit too much weight on the historical document side, as Fanshen seems at times to be a shopping list of what some people did remotely in China a couple years back. Hare keeps is starkly relevant and current, not because it...

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Saigon

An interesting enough insight into the fall of Saigon in 1974 but there's something a bit bland about Hare's writing from my experiences of it to date.

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Verbatim

‘What a verbatim play does is flash your research nakedly. It’s like cooking a meal but the meat is left raw.’MAX STAFFORD-CLARKPlays which use people’s actual words as the basis for their drama are not a new phenomenon. But from the stages of national theatres to fringe venues and universities everywhere, ‘verbatim’ theatre, as it has come to be known, is currently enjoying unprecedented attention and success. It has also attracted...

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Skylight

I'm so taken with this play! I was completely blown away by this year's West End revival but because it's a fast and dialogue-packed couple of hours I found I could only remember a few quotes and I desperately wanted to remember it all, to relive it almost immediately, so I snapped up the text quickly and delightedly stepped back into David Hare's world.This play is sharp, pithy, moving, and wonderfully funny. For me, the play's strength...

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