Miranda Sawyer in The Guardian:
Yes, yes, Shakespeare was a talented chap, but is he all that British theatre has to offer? Like Pride and Prejudice, like the Brontes, like Henry VIII and Elizabeth I, it seems that we, specifically, the English, can never get enough of Billy Shakespeare. Every season, there’s some hot new production, some new approach, analysis or cast. If it’s not theatre, it’s a film, a television series or clever new book.
But is it audiences that clamour for such well-worn tales or the powers that be? Are Mr Darcy, Anne Boleyn and Macbeth so much more interesting than what’s going on today? In this turbulent time of war and money, of natural disasters and manmade destruction, are our contemporary stories so dull, so unfabulous, so irrelevant?