‘Shakespeare’s Globe’, as the theatre has been called since it was founded in 1997, is unusual for a theatre in that it makes a large annual profit, without receiving public funding. How? Its unique angle means it has no need to market itself – what’s more attractive to an American audience than Shakespeare, in London, in a reconstructed Shakespearean theatre? But its decision to put all Shakespearean productions on hold to make way for another dramatist is a decision which Lloyd Evans isn’t too sure about. Samuel Adamson’s Gabriel may be accompanied by some lovely Purcell music, but the actual play’s content leaves much to be desired.
Theoretically, there’s nothing more delightful than evening at Glyndebourne. Unfortunately for Michael Tanner, his trip to see Hippolyte et Aricie wasn’t half as relaxing as he’d hoped. The fact that what ought to have been a 2 hour journey ended up taking over 4 hours was a bad start, but the actual opera didn’t improve his mood much. The ‘long stretches of rather dull choral music and tiresome dance’ are interspersed with ‘a poignant love story’, beautifully portrayed by the cast. But unfortunately, the distractions are too frequent to be ignored.
There are a number of programmes on Radio 3 that have been running for longer than most of us can remember, and Composer of the Week is one of them. Having started in 1943, and celebrating its 70th anniversary this year, it’s even older than The Archers – but why are any of these programmes still going, wonders Peter Phillips? Radio 3 has seen a constant circle of threats of cuts, changes and being closed down, but it still trundles on. At least we Brits are good at preserving our national identity, argues Phillips. Radio 3 might take things to the extreme – but ‘in the end, the very process is valuable’. As an example, here’s a clip from a 1988 broadcast of Composer of the Week.
How on earth does Sandra Bullock go about choosing her films? In this week’s Spectator, Deborah Ross reviews her latest film, The Heat, which isn’t ‘all bad. Possibly only half bad’. Directed by Paul Feig – who was also behind 2011’s hit film Bridesmaids, it does have ‘genuine spark and energy’. But despite managing ‘to combine all the mainstream Hollywood formulas there are’, it somehow misses the mark.Tags: BBC, Film, Glyndebourne, Opera, Radio 3, Sandra Bullock, Shakespeare, The Globe Theatre