Archive for the festivals Category

Damian O’Hare: New Short and Public Appearance

Posted in events, everything else, festivals, various work with tags , on 15 March, 2016 by ambarussa

Earlier this month, Damian was shooting an new short called “WHADD’YA SAY” by director Karl Harpur:

More about this project soon (means: if and when I hear more about it).

Then Damian has made an appearance on the red carpet, at Cinemagic’s Los Angeles Showcase And Sneak Preview of ‘Delicate Things’.


You can see a video of Damian’s arrival here on gettyimages.

You can find pictures of him by clicking the following links:


gettyimages (nice picture!)



“The Grapes of Wrath”: Photographer’s Online Gallery

Posted in festivals, grapes of wrath, theatre with tags , , , , , , , , , on 10 April, 2010 by ambarussa

Please have a look at photographer Geraint Lewis‘ online gallery, and be prepared to stay for a while. Maybe you’d like to start with the portraits (including the late Malcolm McLaren, Anna Chancellor, Alan Cummings and Christopher Ecclestone, to name but a few) or New York?

There’s also a collection of his pictures of “The Grapes of Wrath”, the production in which Damian O’Hare played Tom Joad. 62 pictures of the cast, probably taken during rehearsals for Chichester Festival Theatre last summer.

Just click picture and link below.

by Geraint Lewis

Reviews of “The Grapes of Wrath” tour

Posted in festivals, grapes of wrath, reviews, theatre with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 22 November, 2009 by ambarussa

Here are the direct links to the reviews of the various performances of “The Grapes of Wrath”. Directed by Jonathan Church, the co-production of the English Touring Theatre and Chichester Festival Theatre in summer/autumn/winter 2009 featured Christopher Timothy as Pa Joad, Sorcha Cusack as Ma Joad, Oliver Cotton as Jim Casey and Damian O’Hare as Tom Joad. You can find a cast list here.

10 July – 28 August

1 – 3 October

6 – 10 October

13 – 17 October

20 – 31 October

3 – 14 November

17 – 21 November

“Grapes of Wrath”: Dialect Coaching

Posted in festivals, grapes of wrath, theatre with tags , , , on 17 August, 2009 by ambarussa

Interview with Julia Wilson-Dickson, dialect coach

“(…) If the accents are authentically Oklahoma and just as importantly consistently so, then there’s a good reason buried in your programme. (…)”

While the first paragraph of the article is a wee bit at odds with the reviews, this makes for interesting reading. It will give you some insight into the work of a dialect coach.


Rehearsal for "The Grapes of Wrath" at Chichester Festival Theatre. (c) CFT

“The Grapes of Wrath” video on youtube

Posted in festivals, grapes of wrath, tv with tags , , , , , , on 4 August, 2009 by ambarussa

West Yorkshire Playhouse has put the official “The Grapes of Wrath” teaser on youtube. It’s the same you can find on the website of the Chichester Festival Theatre, including commentary by director and actors, but as some people seemed to have problems getting that one to load, here’s now an alternative.


You can see “The Grapes of Wrath” at West Yorkshire Playhouse from 3 – 14 November. I’ve added all tour dates to the side bar of this blog; if you click on the links of the individual venues, you’ll be taken directly to their respective booking sites.

In case you should still be undecided whether or not to go and see this production, you can have a look at the reviews. Please also check the websites of the various theatres for student reductions and ticket contests.

“The Grapes of Wrath”: After Words

Posted in festivals, grapes of wrath, theatre with tags , , , , , , on 3 August, 2009 by ambarussa

For the curious among you who do pay attention to the man behind the curtain:

Following the evening performance of The Grapes of Wrath at Chichester Festival Theatre on 6 August, you can participate in After Words:

“Stay after the show and savour the experience with the cast and creative team. Hear how the production was created and have your questions answered.”


After Words starts at 10.30pm and lasts till midnight; entrance is free (if you’re a ticket holder, I assume).

Video clips from “The Grapes of Wrath” at Chichester Festival Theatre

Posted in festivals, grapes of wrath, interviews, theatre with tags , , , , , , , , , on 24 July, 2009 by ambarussa

The formidable CFT has put a three minute clip collage plus comments of director and actors online:


Damian O'Hare talks about The Grapes of Wrath at Chichester Festival Theatre.

Damian O'Hare talks about The Grapes of Wrath at Chichester Festival Theatre.

Please allow the site some time to load; it’s well worth the wait – very impressive.

“The Grapes of Wrath” at Chichester Festival Theatre: Reviews

Posted in festivals, grapes of wrath, reviews, theatre with tags , , , , , , , , on 17 July, 2009 by ambarussa

Please note: I won’t make an individual entry for each review. They’ll all be collected here in this post (latest first), so check back for updates. To read the full reviews at the sources, please click on the individual links.


“(…) I have to admit that I was bowled over by the production. It was one of the finest pieces of theatre that I have seen this year – even beating Helen Mirren in Phedre. I was totally absorbed in the story and loved every minute of it. (…)”


“(…) A very moving and well performed play. It is perhaps the best thing I have seen at Chichester for a long time. Everything came together to give a stunning evening. The acting was superb. (…)”


“(…) But “The Grapes of Wrath” is a success because it invites us to look back: it’s not a perfect production, however, it does open the window on a world which we have thankfully left behind. (…)”


“(…) All the same, an excellent evening of real theatre. (…)”


“(…) The theme of American dystopia continues as the panel discuss a stage adaptation of Steinbeck’s classic depression-era novel The Grapes of Wrath. (…)”

Pointing out social injustice = communist propaganda? The more you know… Available worldwide.


Christopher Timothy talks about his work on “The Grapes of Wrath” and draws parallels between the Great Depression and the current situation. Different times, different place but sadly, history is repeating itself. Contains slideshow with pictures from the play. Available worldwide.


“(…) Oliver Cotton, Sorcha Cusack, Damian O’Hare and Christopher Timothy are the names, but none of them stands out – which is exactly as it should be. The point is they are all in it together through thick and thin and even thinner. (…)”


“(…) This production has within the company some fine performers, in the lead male role of Tom Joad; Damian O’ Hare brings power and control to a man struggling to keep his moral compass in the most trying of times. It is a performance of raw physicality aligned to good vocal control and a sharp accent. (…)”


“(…) Damian O’Hare gave an exceptional performance as Tom Joad, returning from prison to find his family life ravaged by the prolonged lack of rain – forced to leave his family again but pledging to preach the word that the poor must band together for their rights. (…)”


“(…) Damian O’Hare is compelling as Tom Joad, not ashamed of doing what a man has to do, with Christopher Timothy as his father keeping the show on the road. (…)”



Jude Loseby, Damian O'Hare and Kassie Bull in "The Grapes of Wrath". (c) Evening Standard/A. Muir

“(…) After a somewhat sluggish first hour, the ensemble comes alive, and the play’s mood, initially didactic and lumpily portentous, grows more tightly poetic and tense. Parts may seem dated but the anger is still raw, and in this ambitious production its power is slowly revealed. (…)”



Jude Loseby, Damian O'Hare, Kassie Bull, Christopher Timothy and Sorcha Cusack in "The Grapes of Wrath" at Chichester Festival Theatre. (c) Times/D. Cooper

“(…) Prime among them is son Tom, who has killed a man in a fight but is now on parole from prison. Damian O’Hare, who plays him, remains cleaner than anyone should after 2,000 miles of dirt, dust and desert, but he has much of the vigour and charisma that Gary Sinise brought to Galati’s production at the Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago, in the 1980s. (…)”


has been fantastic again and put a gallery with production shots online. Click either the link above or the picture below to see more.


Oliver Cotton as Jim Casy and Damian O'Hare as Tom Joad in "The Grapes of Wrath" at Chichester Festival Theatre. (c) CFT


“(…) The play, of course, will not be to all tastes. As a slice of social history it is a remarkable achievement – but there is no joy to be discerned. There is, too, a warning for us all – for the plight of the Joads was the result of economic crisis and environmental folly. The past can have an unhappy knack of returning. (…)”


“(…) Excellent on so many levels. (…)” *****

“(…) Well done to all I heartily reccommend this show. (…)” *****


“(…) Christopher Timothy is rather faceless as Pa Joad and Damian O’Hare as Tom, the honest murderer who picks up the preacher’s burden, is not always distinct. (…)”

“(…) Great novels rarely make great plays but this production does more than enough to confirm that The Grapes of Wrath is a (dated) masterpiece. (…)”

The irony of the Financial Times calling Steinbeck’s work “dated”…


“(…) And, although many of the roles are generalised, key performers stand out: Damian O’Hare as the increasingly militant Tom Joad, Oliver Cotton as the ex-preacher who substitutes political for religious faith, Sorcha Cusack as the indomitable Ma Joad and Rebecca Night as Rose of Sharon, who inherits her compassion and, at the last, suckles a starving man. (…)”


“(…) An arduous evening certainly but, while we can still afford work on this scale, one that’s well worth braving. (…)”

AUDIENCE REACTION (quoted with permission)

Mail from the Cox family in B.  – their daughter, who’s currently living abroad (and a PotC fan!), is here for a visit and they took her to see “The Grapes of Wrath”. Mr. Cox writes that it’s one of the best productions they’ve ever seen in Chichester, (he also mentions a previous production of “Wallenstein” which must have been really good), that they were very impressed by the stage design and that all of the cast was superb, with special mentions for Sorcha Cusack as Ma Joad. As for Damian O’Hare as Tom Joad:

“(…) we hardly dared breathe what a stage presence! Thats what I call acting what a gifted young man really outstanding pasionate performance! We’ll get tickets for August (…)”


“(…) Damian Hare, whilst giving a strong performance as Tom Joad, is guilty of allowing his American accent to obscure some of his dialogue – a problem shared by other members of the cast.

That said, this is theatre at its best. (…)”


“(…) As the hot-headed son Tom, Damian O’Hare provides plenty of fire but his delivery isn’t all it should be – although the pivotal “I’ll be there” speech is imbued with real passion.

This is a powerful a piece of theatre; a work that grabs the audience’s attention from the off and holds it spellbound. (…)”


“(… ) Tom, the convict on licence played by Damian O’Hare, is a man of many parts, who develops a philosophical attitude which is not always at one with his understandable anger. (…)”

“(…) The tensions of the situation are well developed by the whole cast with a special mention of Richard Kane’s role as grandfather. An evening of provocative theatre. (…)”

“Taking the Flak” – S01E02, “Black Gold” / “The Grapes of Wrath on the Radio”

Posted in festivals, grapes of wrath, previews, taking the flak, theatre, tv with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on 15 July, 2009 by ambarussa

Don’t forget to tune in tonight at 10pm to see episode two of “Taking the Flak” on BBC2!


Damian O'Hare as Rory Wallace and Martin Jarvis as David Bradburn in "Taking the Flak"

SE01E02: “Black Gold”

When US network news legend Candida Coulter cascades into Karibu, flanked by her long-suffering cameraman and producer, the American invasion of the conflict-torn African country begins.

“Candida Coulter” (hah!) is played by Ruby Wax.

If you’d like to see the teaser and bonus videos, look no further than the BBC’s channel on Youtube:

Who is David Bradburn?

You can see more videos on

The British Comedy Guide

but once again only for residents of the UK, due to the BBC’s pointless “copyright restrictions”.


Christopher Timothy, who plays “Pa Joad” in “The Grapes of Wrath”, gave an interview to SPIRIT FM, talking about his role, the relationship between Pa Joand and his eldest son Tom (Damian O’Hare), the director, the set etc. The perfect introduction for those who haven’t read the book yet and want to know what it’s all about.

Part I

Part II

“Grapes of Wrath” preview / German “Taking the Flak” review

Posted in festivals, grapes of wrath, previews, reviews, taking the flak, theatre, tv with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 14 July, 2009 by ambarussa

PORTSMOUTH TODAY: “Christopher’s on a journey of discovery”

Actor Christopher Timothy, who plays Pa Joad in “The Grapes of Wrath” at Chichester Festival Theatre, gave an interview to “Portsmouth Today”. He gives some insights into the rehearsal process.

Rehearsals, he reflects, have been largely satisfying, ‘but also dissatisfying because you sometimes take two steps forward and three back.

‘You try different ideas, but what seemed a good idea in the bath suddenly doesn’t seem as good in the rehearsal room with 17 other actors.

‘But you have to try. It’s called courage, though it’s very difficult sometimes.’

While the British media can’t make up their mind whether to love or loathe “Taking the Flak”,, a German website dedicated to – yes, you guessed it, Britcoms – has reviewed the first episode. I wondered how the show would be received internationally (nothing travels as bad as humour); here’s a (very rough) translation for those interested. All translation errors are mine.

BRITCOMS.DE: “Drop the Flak” (…)
(Flak =/= “Flag”!)

“Taking the Flak” (BBC 2, Wednesdays 10pm), the new, expensive comedy-drama about a news team of the BBC, going about their business as frontline reporters in a fictional African state was announced as an acerbic satire. It does look expensive: shot on location and with top-class casting (among others Doon Mackichan and Mackenzie Crook (“The Office”)), the first 60 minutes episode did look impressive. Unfortunately, there was hardly any humour that went beyond stereotypical Africans with funny names, non-stop diarrhoea and other obvious jokes. The characters around the completely superficial senior reporter, the always-stressed producer who’s got a fling with a hard-nosed cameraman and the chubby, sad, lonely radio reporter are all vapid and lack so much a human touch that one hardly notices any of the drama in this comedy-drama (with exception of the drama-department of the BBC having probably increased the budget significantly).

The subject would have offered more, though: “Drop the Dead Donkey” proved it, and the makers of “Taking the Flak” should have more material to work with; Tira Shubart, co-creater, -writer and -producer, is in the news business for 20 years and has worked in more than 40 countries.

But maybe this will work, after all, in the next episodes.

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