We've just seen Theatre Complicité's The Master and Margarita at the Barbican. The Devil and his lecherous cat come to Stalin's Russia to wreak havoc. It's terrific: a preposterous blizzard of spectacle, a thrilling mixture of comedy, terror, vaudeville, farce, magic realism, satire and multimedia hallucinations. Bulgakov started to write his great allegory about Stalinism in 1928, but then burned the manuscript in 1930, started again, and was still revising it four weeks before his death in 1940. A full version was not published in Russia until 1973. It was written in a time of ferocious repression and fear and it stands today as a novel of irrepressible freedom. In his room, in the pages of his novel, Bulgakov could do anything and think about everything: think about God, mercy, love, desire, redemption, madness, cowardice, hope; have a naked woman fly through the skies; break open the doors of the lunatic asylum; let imagination flood and flame through the grim grey Moscow streets; break through the oppressive social realism of the time with a rick cacophony of styles. Say no to terror and yes to life. Fabulous.