The Lehman Trilogy
National Theatre, 4th July to 22nd September
The collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008 is a distant catastrophe in this triptych by Stefano Massini. It tells the story of three mid-19th-century immigrant Jewish sons of a Bavarian cattle merchant who found the bank and become kings of Wall Street. The play, already seen in Paris and Milan, is newly adapted by Ben Power for director Sam Mendes. The brothers are played by Simon Russell Beale, Adam Godley and Ben Miles. American Express took over the bank in 1984 and the play moves quickly into a new era of financial speculation.
Barry Humphries’ Weimar Cabaret
Barbican Theatre, 11th to 29th July
This is a welcome return for a revelatory cabaret from Barry Humphries, who discovered a lifelong passion for the banned songs of Nazi Germany—Korngold, Krenek, Kurt Weill and others—as a teenager in Melbourne. He shares his passion in a witty, sardonic commentary studded with music from slinky chanteuse Meow Meow (stand by for her “Sonata Erotica”) and the Aurora Orchestra. The show was briefly in London and the Edinburgh Festival two years ago, so this is a rare opportunity to see it.