Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from 2013

The Duck House at the Vaudeville Theatre, London

From the moment Ben Miller strides onto the stage of the Vaudeville and delivers a concise and funny introduction to proceedings, I got the uncanny feeling that I was going to like this play. A lot.

Written by Dan Patterson (Mock the Week) and Colin Swash (Have I Got News For You and Private Eye), this is a comedy (read farce) of the highest order. Set in May 2009, that wonderful time when our beloved MP's were exposed as the expenses villains we now know them as, this is near the knuckle stuff. The early part takes great joy in creating comedy from what we now know, lampooning many that were later to be in government in a very knowing and very funny way.

The lead roll of MP on the turn Robert Houston is played with delicious exuberance by Ben Miller, when needed, channeling the supreme reaches of an out of control Basil Fawlty, while still being able to deliver those so subtle jokes so well. He just seems not only perfect for the role, but totally enjoying it. Making it all the b…

The Hothouse by Harold Pinter at the Trafalgar Studios, London

This weekend saw my very first experience of a Harold Pinter play, the world famous playwright who I literally knew nothing about. I presumed some highbrow theatery stuff, all stuffy and indigestable. I know not why, I just for some reason assumed too much. Famous theatre playwright I thought, not going to be entertaining stuff for a commoner like me. It'll be like wading through treacle!

How wrong I was! Funny, sharp, cool, black (very black) and just so much fun! A literally endless cascade of glorious dialogue creating a somewhat open play which could be interpreted in many ways. To find yourself laughing so much at a play which contains torture, death, rape and murder seems strange and when leaving the theatre I heard many discussions about the contents, many not getting it, many not liking it. It could certainly be a play best not viewed if you do not get very black humour, fortunately I have no problem at all with this type of material, and got it very much.

The cast were su…

Passion Play at the Duke Of York's Theatre, London

Why my blog became all serious and high-brow I do not know, but this weekend I had the pleasure of being in London once again and saw the simply superb Passion Play at the Duke Of York Theatre.

Like the recently viewed Beautiful Thing, this is an old play given another airing. First performed in 1981 and written by Peter Nichols. It presents domestic woes in the form of a most stylish and inventive format. The two main characters (the married couple Eleanor and James) represented on stage by dynamic alter-egos, wholly revealing that persons innermost thoughts.

The reason for these alter-egos so appearing comes in the gorgeous form of Kate, a sexual predator and "old" man eater, who having buried her previous conquest sets her sights on James, via of all people his wife Eleanor. Devouring and consuming him via her stunning form and rampant persona, the alter-egos appear. First James' and then even more dramatically Eleanors'.

Stoking the fire between the couple is the…

Beautiful Thing at the Arts Theatre, London

I felt the need to resurrect my blog after a couple of months of hibernation, and the perfect opportunity came following my viewing of an absolutely superb play on Saturday. As it happens I have spoilt the punchline of whether the show was any good already, but matters not, let me go back to the beginning.

I was due to be in London on Saturday so I rooted about looking for a play to see while there and it turned out I managed to find one featuring one of of my favourites, Suranne Jones. So I booked up, with genuinely no knowledge at all about what the play was about (I am want to do this whenever in the city).

Following buying the tickets, I did a little research into the play and discovered that this was originally a play, made into a film and now this a 20th anniversary version of the play. A play about the developing relationship of two young boys burgeoning love for each other. It is not a theme for a play that I would have specifically chosen to go and see, and perhaps many might…