Theatre904 entries

The Master and Margarita

Opens: 15/03/2012 Closes: 07/04/2012 Barbican, London
The new production from Simon McBurney's brilliant Complicite is a rich spectacle based on Mikhail Bulgakov's magical novel of the same name. Three stories intertwine; two set in 1930s Moscow, the epicentre of Soviet power, and the other in Jerusalem during the last days of Jesus' life. For more information visit: http://www.barbican.org.uk/theatre/event-detail.asp?ID=12872 Buy: https://www.barbican.org.uk/eticketing/performancelist.asp?shoid=34230
80 %
Time Out“A collage of horror and delight...” It captures the absurd wit, the philosophy and the sheer spectacular thrill of Bulgakov's novel. But it lacks tenderness...
 
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60%
Financial Times“McBurney doe not do chaos...” McBurney’s production cogently persuades you of the novel’s peculiar, compelling power, but ultimately does not convey it...
 
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80 %
The Telegraph“An extraordinary and thrilling production...” This is a constantly daring and ambitious staging of an enthrallingly original literary masterpiece, and makes a fascinating companion piece to the National Theatre’s Collaborators...
 
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70 %
The Independent“Work in progress...” McBurney's multimedia staging has fantastic moments, orchestrating amplified sound, physical theatre, live camerawork, and swirling projections...
 
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60%
The Arts Desk“Its ensemble productions regularly deliver on visual spectacle...” It’s a fine balance to play, and under McBurney’s direction this production manages largely, though certainly not wholly, to pull it off. The three separate strands of the book are rather ingeniously interwoven...
 
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100%
The Observer“This phenomenal production should have free entry into heaven..” If there are moments when the narrative seems eaten alive by the visuals, it's hard to see how an alternative would work. McBurney has a magnificent eye for the big picture and a "show your workings" approach to theatre...
 
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60%
Guardian“Leaves you faintly exhausted...” There is something odd about a show that puts its faith in the human being in a hi-tech age, yet relies so heavily on sensory bombardment by visual wizardry. Fortunately the performances are strong enough to withstand the technical bravura...
 
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100%
Whatsonstage.com“A visceral, heart-thumping show...” Simon McBurney achieves a remarkable consistency in the various strands and provides a rich feast of dark arts, movement, rhetoric and stunning visual imagery...
 
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90%
The Stage“Visually stunning and acted with the utmost commitment...” This mind and genre-expanding theatricalisation is at once complex, demanding and disturbing. It hurtles along in McBurney’s utterly fluid, impressionistic staging between past, present and future...
 
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80 %
Evening Standard“Both absorbing and wonderfully nuts...” The production gets right inside one’s head. It combines operatic grandeur with moments of aching poignancy. There are splashes of slapstick, yet also great swathes of the sinister and the poetic...
 
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