Clive Davis

Clive Davis is a critic with The Times (UK). This account has been auto-generated, and does not indicate that this person is an active member of Show-Score.com. That said, if you "follow" this member, you will automatically be updated whenever s/he writes a new review.

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Reviews (116)
Favour (London)
Shepherds Bush
The Times (UK)

"In its way this co-production with Clean Break, a company that specialises in work depicting women behind bars, offers a dour image of the life of a former convict. But the piece is illuminated by exceptionally sensitive performances from a cast of four." Full Review

The Times (UK)

The first hour or so delivers an absorbing blend of dark and light, anguish and humour. Sadly, that delicate balance goes awry later. It’s still a thought-provoking piece, but you’re left wondering what might have been. Full Review

The Times (UK)

The blurb describes the piece as a “slippery thriller”, yet ... [it] utterly [fails] to generate any sort of tension. Full Review

The Times (UK)

[Harry] Hill’s manic humour sweeps you along. Brown’s score covers a lot [of] ground ... from sultry Cole Porter to the astringent harmonies of Stephen Sondheim. The lyrics are jaunty and inventive. There’s a knowing tastelessness to the farce. Full Review

The Times (UK)

The casting of the Hollywood luminary Amy Adams .... may be the main selling point. Whether the gambit works is another matter. The details are stylishly assembled but they fail to carry the evening. Full Review

Oklahoma! (London)
Southwark
The Times (UK)

It’s a musical of two halves. Listen with your eyes closed and you’ll have no grounds for complaint. It’s in terms of drama that directors Daniel Fish and Jordan Fein will provoke arguments. This is a radically reworked vision of a vintage show. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Yes, it’s all very old-fashioned, and the neatly packaged ending wouldn’t get through a script conference at Call the Midwife. Signing off with Thanks for the Memory is clumsy, too. Yet for all that, it’s still a curiously watchable time capsule. Full Review

Scandaltown (London)
Hammersmith
The Times (UK)

Like so much of his recent work, Scandaltown is a promising idea in search of another draft...Rachel O’Riordan’s direction fails to add fizz, and leaves the simple yet colourful set — designed by the Good Teeth team — looking disconcertingly underpopulated at times. Full Review

The 47th (London)
Southwark
The Times (UK)

It’s an entertaining but uneven pageant held together by a barnstorming performance by Bertie Carvel, who as well as sporting a gravity-defying Trumpian hairstyle has captured all his mannerisms and tics. Full Review

The Times (UK)

The performances are sharp and assured — let’s face it, any play with Robert Lindsay at its centre has a head start over the competition...Yet the script keeps wandering off in too many directions. Zegerman has a habit, too, of waving her research in our faces. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Hats off to Aaron Sorkin. While the official title may be Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, this captivating drama is very much Sorkin’s take on a story that has become embedded in the consciousness of generations of readers. Full Review

Clybourne Park (London)
Finsbury Park
The Times (UK)

The problem is that Norris has given us types rather than fully rounded characters. It’s to the enormous credit of the actors that they almost make us care about them. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Ruth Wilson is on stage for all of 70 minutes, chatting ever more frantically down a phone line. Fine actress though she is, she can’t salvage a piece that — written nearly a century ago — remains an exercise in stagecraft rather than a compelling dark night of the soul. Full Review

Cock (London)
West End
The Times (UK)

The scene where John and W make love, all the while standing on opposite sides of a revolve, like horny, socially distanced citizens, raised a smile. Otherwise, this was an hour and 45 minutes of tedium. Full Review

The Times (UK)

But while Leemore Marrett Jr and Leonie Elliott deliver winning performances as the Jamaican husband and wife Gilbert and Hortense, there’s not much room for subtlety in this panoramic tale of 1940s immigration. Full Review

The Woods
Elephant and Castle
The Times (UK)

Two tiresome and immature people go round in circles for 90 minutes. That, in a nutshell, is the plot of this early David Mamet play...Russell Bolam’s charmless production fails to make the case for digging it out of the bottom drawer. Full Review

The Animal Kingdom
Hampstead
The Times (UK)

It’s only some 80 minutes long, yet Ruby Thomas’s absorbing facsimile of a family therapy session resembles one of those undulating courtroom dramas where personalities shift in and out of focus under cross-examination. The performances have a note-perfect, fly-on-the wall quality; Lucy Morrison’s direction is always sure-footed. Full Review

The Times (UK)

If you have fond memories of the film, this show is always going to come off second best. But the best of the music still gives it the edge over that other portrait of life on the wrong side of the tracks, the all-conquering Jersey Boys. Full Review

A Number (Old Vic)
Southwark
The Times (UK)

'A Number' ultimately has the air of the first act of an unfinished play. If the script continually leads us down blind alleys, it’s still possible to admire Essiedu’s deft shifts in register, from confusion and resentment to bland good cheer. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Elizabeth McGovern’s play about Ava Gardner — in which she also plays the fading star — is based on a book by the late British journalist Peter Evans. You really do need to be a hardcore Gardner fan to enjoy this rambling, boozy string of reminiscences. Full Review

The 4th Country
Finsbury Park
The Times (UK)

Kate Reid’s meditation on the politics of Northern Ireland doesn’t lack ambition. If anything the play aims too high. Although the young cast inject passion and urgency, this [play] ... attempts to cover far too much terrain in too short a time. Full Review

Best of Enemies
Southwark
The Times (UK)

Graham has given us a raw, exciting and timely piece about how we have forgotten how to listen to each other. Full Review

Manor
Waterloo
The Times (UK)

Some plays are so awful that they almost become enjoyable. Moira Buffini’s breathtakingly inept satire ... lurches from one improbable scene to another before sinking with all hands. It’s cataclysmic, certainly, but not in the way the writer intended. Full Review

Mum
Soho
The Times (UK)

The play rushes to a conclusion when it really needs time to breathe. There is potential here, though. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Polly Findlay’s production coats the play’s absurdist tendencies with a veneer of metropolitan gloss. Lizzie Clachan’s revolving set delivers urban chic, and the actors fire their lines at each other with panache. The problem remains that the characters are never more than two-dimensional. Full Review

The Times (UK)

"Roy Williams has created a portrait of three generations of a West Indian family in which two middle-aged sisters, both activists in their youth, reflect on where life and politics have taken a wrong turning. ... I wish I could say he’d been successful, but The Fellowship fails on just about every level. " Full Review

The Times (UK)

"Jennings and director Nicholas Hytner allow us to glimpse the turmoil churning inside a man torn between caring for his parishioners and standing by his principles." Full Review

The Times (UK)

Lucas Hnath’s sequel ... is closer to a thought experiment than a fully engaging piece of theatre. But it’s an intriguing piece all the same. June Watson is excellent as the faithful Anne Marie. Full Review

Britannicus (London)
Hammersmith
The Times (UK)

Even so, this modern-dress interpretation ... doesn’t find an answer to the perennial question of how to find a replacement for the stately music of French classical verse. Wertenbaker’s text is more jagged and demotic, making those long scenes of exposition much, much harder to absorb. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Go with an open mind and you’ll be blown away. Moss’s diverse casting reinvents conventional ideas of beauty, in line with the idea that character trumps superficialities. Laura Hopkins’s set isn’t easy on the eye. Full Review

Middle (London)
Waterloo
The Times (UK)

Sad to say, Middle ... [lapses] into dull, meandering exchanges which ... [only] prompted ripples of laughter. Eldridge hasn’t given [the characters] enough depth, and director Polly Findlay hasn’t found a way to make the marital duel convincing enough to hold our attention. Full Review

The Times (UK)

The narrative is so flimsy and opaque that you could just as easily convince yourself that you’ve wandered into an avant-garde version of Cabaret. In the gloom, it’s hard to make out much detail. Thereafter you fumble your way through. Full Review

Wolf Cub (London)
Hampstead
The Times (UK)

It’s a wild, incantatory travelogue, like an Angela Carter novella with lethal weapons and a touch of American Gothic...This isn’t a solemn documentary; it’s more of a fever dream. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Along with the full-frontal male nudity, there’s a lot of kissing, caressing and even some spanking, too. What this Jeremy O Harris play conspicuously lacks, however, is a worthwhile storyline. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Some of my happiest theatrical memories are associated with the Kiln — or the Tricycle, as I still tend to think of it — so I find myself wondering how such a clumsy piece could have been chosen to launch the venue’s new season. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Consolation comes in watching the newcomer Ben Joyce — who only graduated from drama school this year — make such a fine job of the Valli vocals. Full Review

The Times (UK)

To be fair, any playwright would struggle to do justice to a book that, if it were a play, would resemble one of those Robert Lepage chronicles that rumble on for six hours or more. If you’re familiar with the story as told by Caro, you’ll probably find Hare’s portrait too superficial, too cartoonish. Full Review

The Times (UK)

What you get is a beguiling combination of technology and old-fashioned, guess-what-happened-next storytelling...If you want an alternative to the multiplex this Easter, you know where to go. Full Review

The Times (UK)

The main problem is that Hutchinson...never seems sure what kind of play he is trying to write. The result is an unwieldy combination of faux drama-doc, pulp fiction and a sprinkling of metaphysical speculation about truth versus fantasy. Full Review

The Times (UK)

For members of the Game of Thrones fan club, it’s also an opportunity to see what Kit Harington (alias Jon Snow) makes of the warrior role. Is he up to the challenge? The answer is a resounding yes. Full Review

Our Generation
Waterloo
The Times (UK)

Still, if the running time could easily be cut by half, I haven’t seen such assured displays of youthful energy since this auditorium played host to Lee Hall’s magnificent teenage odyssey Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour six years ago. Full Review

Red Pitch
Shepherds Bush
The Times (UK)

A promising debut about football, friendship and gentrification...While the writing doesn’t always dig deep, the piece gathers momentum thanks to Daniel Bailey’s crisp direction and the strong performances. Full Review

The Times (UK)

It’s a daringly contemporary re-working which will be remembered for one of the most imposing performances of the decade. [However] the slackening of pace in the second half was unmistakable. Full Review

The Glow
Sloane Square
The Times (UK)

January hasn’t even ended yet, and we already have a contender for the title of worst play of the year. Alistair McDowall’s time-travelling fantasy actually begins promisingly...Before long, however, it plunges off the rails... Full Review

The Times (UK)

Calling this show a mash-up is an understatement: it’s more like pouring a few hundredweight of melodies into a cement mixer lorry and adding several tons of rhinestones. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Sometimes the dialogue flickers into quirky life. More often, the director Sam Pritchard allows it to fall into static exchanges where, on Rosie Elnile’s functional set, there is little to nourish the eye. Full Review

The Times (UK)

It’s the script that doesn’t quite work. Still, it’s wonderful to see the multitasking [cast] handle not just the singing, but [an] array of subsidiary roles. The songs ... are adorable. Full Review

The Times (UK)

It’s a frustrating 80 minutes or so — as was the shorter version recently adapted for Radio Four...Cramming seven scenarios into such a concise piece on stage is overly ambitious. Full Review

The Times (UK)

In the end, it’s the women who help to lift the show. Gabrielle Brooks gives us a stoic Rita who refuses to be shoved into the background, while Shanay Holmes impresses in the skeletal role of the singer’s beauty queen lover, Cindy Breakspeare. Full Review

The Times (UK)

Hardcore Mantel fans will no doubt still want to see how their vision compares. Everyone else would be better off with the book or audiobook — set at the right speed, of course. Full Review