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THEATRE REVIEW: Chekhov’s ‘The Seagull’ (Hemar Theatre) at Ognisko Polskie

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Ognisko Polskie, the Polish Hearth Club, is an exquisite venue: glistening chandeliers please the eye, red velvet lines the elegant staircases; this quiet haven in South Kensington is full of Old World charm. Last Saturday night, a traditional version of Chekhov’s play The Seagull was produced here. Set on a lake estate in Imperial Russia,…

Andreea Scridon | 12/02/2017
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THEATRE REVIEW: Chekhov’s ‘Three Sisters’ at the Union Theatre – simplified production deserves the benefit of the doubt

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Tracy Letts’ adaptation of Chekhov’s 1900 play – directed by Phil Wilmott – gives an English, deadpan intonation to Russian humor. The expansive, often ironic comedy characteristic of Chekhov’s plays persists even though Letts has cut and altered considerable portions of the original text. The layout of the Union Theatre in Southwark, which has the…

Andreea Scridon | 27/01/2017
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On homeland mythologies and empowerment: an interview with Czech film-maker Petr Václav

Just before the Barbican screening of his award-winning 2016 film We Are Never Alone, director Petr Václav took some time to frame his work in a conversation that started out with questions about Czech identity, and ended on post-truth masculinity and why We Are Never Alone is, essentially, a feminist film: women have a future,…

Julia Secklehner | 12/12/2016
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MADE IN PRAGUE PREVIEW: ‘Family Film’ (Omerzu, 2015) – perhaps best kept in the family

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Described as ‘a fusion between black comedy and drama’, Olmo Omerzu’s Family Film (2015) slowly unravels the superficial layers of a near-perfect wealthy family living in Prague, which falls apart as the parents go sailing in Asia with dog Otto, leaving behind their two children, grown-up Anna and her 15-year-old brother Erik. Moving from everyday…

Julia Secklehner | 22/11/2016
'Demon' (Wrona, 2015)

PLAY POLAND PREVIEW: ‘Demon’ (Wrona, 2015) – an exotic allegory of politics today

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Marcin Wrona was a rising star of Polish cinema before his untimely death in 2015 and Demon, his final and most ambitious work, would have been his breakthrough had he lived. It’s a curious, unsettling film, made more so by parallels between the life of its director and protagonist, which will no doubt earn it…

Natasha Berger | 19/11/2016