Review: Red

Red is the inspiring story of groundbreaking expressionist painter Mark Rothko. Rothko led an exciting and tumultuous life but experienced much success in the art world. He is often seen as a revolutionary artist and his story is one that many have found to be worth telling. Writer John Logan decided that a play would be the best format for Rothko’s biography, and he brought his story to the stage in December 2009. Since then, Red has received critical acclaim worldwide, earning six Tony Awards, including one for Best Play in 2010 and making it to Broadway. Today, Wyndham’s Theatre in London’s West End is fortunate to bring the production to its stage.

This is the first time the play has been revived in the UK since the original run of the production that started in 2009.  Artistic Director of the MGC Michael Grandage directs the current production at Wyndham’s Theatre. Award winning actor Alfred Molina joins the crew as the lead role, Mark Rothko. Molina won a Tony award for his role as Rothko in the original production, and he remains thoroughly impressive in Grandage’s iteration. Molina’s brilliant performance brings to life the mind of Rothko and helps viewers understand his struggles. He brings Rothko’s passion for his artwork to the front of the stage, enchanting the audience with his work.

Alfred Enoch joins the stage as Rothko’s young assistant, Ken. Enoch is known for his role in the Harry Potter film series as well as starring in the NBC series How to Get Away with Murder. Enoch delivers a fantastic performance as the fictional performance, helping to bring meaning to the confusing artwork of Rothko and interpreting his sometimes-erratic personality. Enoch is the perfect counterpart for Molina, providing balance and understanding and creating an amicable contrast to Molina’s portrayal of Rothko.

The playwright, by John Logan, has a history of success in theatre. His catalogue of plays includes Never the Sinner, Scorched Earth, Riverview, and Speaking in Tongues. He has also worked on the television series Penny Dreadful. In addition to this, Logan is known for his screenwriting contributions to cinema, having been nominated for three Academy Awards. Some of his credits include Spectre, Skyfall, Sweeny Todd, The Aviator, Gladiator, and The Last Samurai. His talent is showcased in Red, creating captivating dialogue and providing an enthralling environment while keeping the audience engaged and the story fresh.

In Wyndham’s Theatre’s Red, audiences can expect to learn the fascinating story of the life of Mark Rothko. Even those who aren’t artistic experts will appreciate the struggles and successes of Rothko in this dazzling production. The cast and crew come together to create an unforgettable experience and weave a comprehensive story. Did you know that the role of Ken was Eddie Redmayne‘s big break?

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