Lenny Henry makes his Donmar debut in the theatre’s revival of Bertolt Brecht’s play. Here is what critics have been saying about the production so far… 

The resistible

The Guardian: **** “The second half loses momentum in parts – fault of the hotchpotch structure – but this show, if it is theatrical polish you are after, shines.”

Broadway World: **** “You will leave moved and motivated; to do otherwise is almost irresistible.”

WhatsOnStage: *** “Bruce Norris’ springy new adaptation seems rather too pat – at once overblown and underpowered.”

The Stage: *** “For all its snazzy speakeasy trappings and its little jokes about corporate sponsorship, its sense of irony is underdeveloped. It seems primarily concerned with showing its audience a good time. It’s diet Brecht.”

The Independent: *** “the production needs to be more quick-off-the-mark and decisive about the new regime’s strategies for cover-up.”

A Younger Theatre: ” This is a scintillating piece of theatre, which, unfortunately, is as relevant now as it was then.”

Time Out: *** ” this première production is funny and relatively subtle.”

Radio Times: *** “Arturo Ui doesn’t quite manage to pull off a successful hit on this occasion, but the patrons won’t be calling on Lenny to make any complaints.”

The Times: ** “Lenny Henry sparkles in a Trump parody that’s a little too cheesy.”

British Theatre.com: **** “The two hours and forty-five minutes fizzed by and in true Brechtian style inspired a full-blown rebellion in the audience.”

West End Wilma: ***** ” The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui is a welcome and warning revival. It forces the audience to be critical and to have opinions rather than simply sit in the dark and be passive. The best kind of theatre.”

Culture Whisper: **** “Lenny Henry captivates as Ui; his authoritative stage presence dominates the theatre space.”

The Telegraph: **** “I can’t fault Sir Len or the rest of the cast. I was simply left wanting less leftist group-think.”

Exeunt Magazine: “Henry is deeply disturbing as the play charts his rise, and at his best when he’s playing a character rather than lightly imitating Trump.”

The Upcoming: ***** “this is very much a production for everyone: funny, shocking, powerful and genuinely brilliant.”

British Theatre Guide: “This may not be Brecht as we know him but it is dazzling theatre and keeps up the Donmar’s remarkable record of highly entertaining but consistently challenging hits.”

Evening Standard: **** “Even if the savage bleakness of his vision doesn’t always come across in this revival, it’s skilfully performed, atmospheric, at times uproariously funny and guaranteed to make theatregoers squirm.”

Theatre Weekly:****”The Resistable Rise of Arturo Ui is a chilling parable, which in this production at least, is particularly revealing, especially as we race towards another election.”

The FT: **** “All in all, there may not be enough here to galvanise, as plainly intended, but there’s more than enough both to entertain and impress.”

City Am: ***** “it’s a powerful, well-rounded production that’ll leave you breathless, if not enlightened.”

The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui continues to play at the Donmar Warehouse until the 17th June. For more information and to book tickets visit: https://www.donmarwarehouse.com/production/192/arturo-ui/

 

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