‘Never mix music with politics.’ Tom Stoppard and Andre Previn’s dark political-musical comedy does exactly that!
In Tom Stoppard and André Previn’s ingenious 1977 comedy, a political dissident shares a room in a mental hospital with a genuine madman who thinks that he has a symphony orchestra at his fingertips. Unless the dissident recants, he will never be released. The orchestra becomes a player in this biting satire on life in a world of alternative facts.
This unusual blend of theatre and concert has rarely been mounted, and never in Australia. Stoppard is an acclaimed writer for stage and screen, winning an Oscar for Shakespeare in Love. His dazzling plays buzz with wit and wordplay. Pianist, conductor and composer André Previn has also had a stellar and award-winning career.
Reconciling wit and anger, EGBDF reminds us that one of the worst features of tyranny is its ability to reorder reality.
Shostakovich knew this well and offers his own sly commentary in the dizzying circus of his Ninth Symphony.
‘‘an all-encompassing piece of total theatre…’’
Michael Billington, The Guardian
reviewing the production by National Theatre, London