I tried my hand again this year at getting onto the Olivier Awards public panel for the 2018 awards. (I applied last year and the year before.) Much to my surprise, I managed to get a step further this year: I was invited to an interview! It was thrilling to know I was within reach of the panel, and that (if I did), I’d be helping to shape next year’s awards – and get to see a hefty amount of top class theatre while I was at it. But sadly it wasn’t to be, so I’ll try all over again next year.
In case you don’t know how it works, all you need to do is provide a list of all the productions you’ve seen the previous year and write a 150-word review of a show you’ve seen recently. At the time I applied I had just seen Lazarus for the second time, so there was no other choice for me…
Devised by David Bowie and Enda Walsh, Lazarus is a new musical that imagines what happened after the events of The Man Who Fell To Earth. New arrangements of classic Bowie songs are interwoven with three original tracks to tell the story of Thomas Newton, an alien who has been prevented from returning to his home planet and is now leading a monotonous existence, descending further into his madness.
Under Ivo van Hove’s direction, the show is an attack on the senses – the blank, beige set is the canvas upon which a work of art is made. Lazarus contains perhaps the best examples of lighting design and use of projections that I have yet seen.
Michael C. Hall gives a captivating and affecting lead performance, ably supported by Sophia Anne Caruso and a mesmerising Michael Esper. It is a theatre experience like no other.