The Critics’ Circle

Protecting and promoting cultural criticism since 1913

The Critics’ Circle believes impartial, professional criticism of the arts is an essential ingredient of a healthy society. The Circle today has 490 members shared between Theatre (117), Music (78), Film (151), Dance (57), Visual Arts (47) and Books (40). Admission to the Circle is by invitation from the Council.

Since 1988 the Circle has presented each year the Service to Art Rosebowl to an artist of conspicuous achievement. In 2015 the members voted for Dame Maggie Smith, in 2016 for Matthew Bourne.

The sections make their own awards in ceremonies which are significant social occasions, and hold periodic meetings and lunches to discuss their awards, propose new members, debate current issues and meet artists.

President: Mark Shenton
Vice-President: Mark Pullinger
Hon. General Secretary: Rick Jones criticscircleallsections@gmail.com
Hon. Treasurer: Peter Cargin
Trustees: Ian Herbert, Michael Billington, Peter Cargin

News & reviews

Porgy & Bess, Grange Park Opera

Porgy & Bess, Grange Park Opera

Midsummer murders Grinding poverty and death at knife-point. A dinner interval. More poverty, drug dependency, a hurricane, another stabbing. Then a drive home through leafy Surrey. An evening spent at Porgy & Bess at Grange Park Opera does throw up some extreme...

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THE CONSUL, MILLENNIUM CENTRE, CARDIFF

No waiting Second up in WNO’s imaginative ‘Rhyddid/Freedom’ season is Gian Carlo Menotti’s political opera from 1949. Well known to American TV audiences as the composer of the children's Christmas TV opera Amahl and the Night Visitors, Menotti is hardly a household...

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The Hunting Gun, Aldeburgh Festival

Misfire The Hunting Gun by Yasushi Inoue, a great Japanese 20th-century author, is a complex, subtle tale involving three women, sexual betrayal by one of them with the husband of another, a daughter’s viewpoint, and the adulteress’s suicide. We get diverse...

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Aminta e Fillide, Milton Court Theatre

Barocking By Robert Thicknesse No apologies for writing about a student show: over the past 20 years some of my best evenings have been spent at such performances, and they provide a pretty decent proportion of the staged productions available through the country (at...

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DEAD MAN WALKING, MILLENNIUM CENTRE, CARDIFF

In recent years opera has started to pick its topics out of the newspapers, finding material in the everyday in a way Puccini would have approved. Now WNO has turned to Jake Heggie's fact-based tale, premiered in 2000, of a nun going to meet a death-row prisoner who...

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