Peter Craven
is a literary and culture critic.

By this author


Culture July 04, 2020

Actor Toby Schmitz’s live wire

For actor Toby Schmitz, there’s nothing like the exhilaration of being on stage, but for the past week he’s replicated some of that feeling in a series of live-streamed performances of Will Eno’s Thom Pain. He speaks about playing Hamlet, the vitality of theatre and keeping his ‘art spark’ alight in the Covid-19 lockdown. “The audience is the final director that teaches you things you would never have thought of. You know, if one person moves their leg it may mean nothing, but if four people do, then you’ve lost them somehow.”

Culture April 25, 2020

National Theatre Live’s Twelfth Night

With theatres around the world closed, stage productions are now entering our homes, via the internet. The fourth streaming performance from Britain’s National Theatre, Twelfth Night, takes its audience on a rollicking journey of mistaken identity and besotted love.

Theatre March 14, 2020

Emerald City

MTC and Queensland Theatre’s revival of Emerald City brings the distinctly Australian dramatic idiom of playwright David Williamson into focus once more. Skilfully led by Nadine Garner, the work still has much to offer.

Theatre February 01, 2020

Home, I’m Darling

Boasting a superlative performance by Nikki Shiels, Home, I’m Darling combines high farce and drama to interrogate gender roles.

Culture November 30, 2019

Publisher and writer Hilary McPhee

Once a powerhouse of Australian publishing, Hilary McPhee traded the comfortable life she knew for a mysterious job with Middle Eastern royalty. In writing about this adventure and the collapse of her marriage to Don Watson in her new memoir, Other People’s Houses, she traces her strange journey back to herself. “I dreaded coming back to Australia because I left feeling I’d lost everything, I’d lost my marriage. We’d been together for more than 20 years, so it was quite a lot of life.”

Television November 09, 2019

His Dark Materials

With a superb cast and a cracking pace, the BBC–HBO adaptation of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials proves television is the perfect vehicle for the beloved trilogy.

Theatre October 05, 2019

Anthem

As a piece of ambitious drama – brimming with compassion and moody delights, and performed by a superb ensemble cast – Anthem hits the high notes.

Theatre September 07, 2019

Ulster American

With its pitch-perfect production of David Ireland’s wickedly funny Ulster American, Red Stitch Actors Theatre continues to do some of the most interesting work to be seen on Australian stages.

Culture August 03, 2019

Alexander Briger and the Australian World Orchestra

Under the disciplined baton of founder Alexander Briger, the Australian World Orchestra played an impressive concert of works by Westlake, Janáček and Sibelius.

Culture August 03, 2019

Alexander Briger and the Australian World Orchestra

Under the disciplined baton of founder Alexander Briger, the Australian World Orchestra played an impressive concert of works by Westlake, Janáček and Sibelius.

Culture July 06, 2019

A Little Night Music

While Victorian Opera’s production of A Little Night Music may fail to dazzle, it satisfyingly portrays Sondheim’s witty insights into the sweetness and sorrow of the world.

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