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Torch Song Trilogy

Menier Chocolate Factory

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#1 Front Row Dress

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Posted 10 June 2012 - 03:57 PM

Anyone else caught this yet? The original production really has a special place in my heart and I love the film, but this heavily edited (2 and a half hours from the orignal 4 hours) production doesn't sully the memories. They've cleverly kept the set and costumes non time specific and you realise how relevant it all still is. David Bedella is wonderful as Arnold, as is Joe McFadden as Ed, but what a show stealing third act turn from young Perry Millward as teenage tearway David. The usually wonderful Sara Kestelman hadn't quite hit the mark yet, but it was still a preview. Looks to me like the Chocolate Factory are back on track. More on my blog for the real masochists amongst you http://frontrowdress...-chocolate.html
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#2 Latecomer

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Posted 10 June 2012 - 04:45 PM

Going in July. Booked for the meal deal as I liked the look of the dishes. Glad to hear a good report! :)

#3 Front Row Dress

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Posted 10 June 2012 - 04:57 PM

Food was nice too
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#4 Latecomer

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Posted 10 June 2012 - 05:03 PM

View PostFront Row Dress, on 10 June 2012 - 04:57 PM, said:

Food was nice too
:)

#5 Front Row Dress

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Posted 13 June 2012 - 07:07 PM

Reviews are in:
The Stage (Mark Shenton) a qualified rave - http://www.thestage....ch-song-trilogy
Telegraph 4 stars - http://www.telegraph...ory-review.html
Guardian 3 stars - http://www.guardian....-trilogy-review
Evening Standard 3 stars - http://www.standard....ew-7847419.html
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#6 Reich

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Posted 14 June 2012 - 09:53 AM

Reading the reviews I’m generally disappointed with general perceptions of it.
http://www.whatsonstage.com/roundup/theatre/london/E8831339605662/Review+Round-up%3A+Did+critics+warm+to+Torch+Song+Trilogy%3F.html
although I do agree with
Libby Purves
The Times
★★★★
"Bedella shines as Arnold, whose life we follow over six years with pity, admiration and exasperation as he loses a bisexual lover to a passionless camouflage marriage, finds a new man, sees him murdered, and tries to build a home. In the first London revival since 1985 of Harvey Fierstein’s piece, it is fascinating how it still hits the spot. Legal persecution is over, but stigma endures: politics and Church fracture over 'normality' and same-sex marriage ... But the play’s strength lies deeper, in an Everyman struggle towards honest relationships ... Its brilliance is in demonstrating how fast 'tolerance' runs out when Arnold claims a full family life. We all recognise the social message: 'Be camp, amuse us, have your queeny civil partnerships, but don’t think you’re normal.' Yet we all want homes and all know grief. The most wrenchingly performed, horribly credible scene is a row between mother and son about whose widowhood is worst."
I found it very moving and brilliantly played. 4.5 stars from me. Also really liked the harpist 
Now onto the boring stuff!
I was sat on row E, I’m 5ft 9 and when ever anyone sat or lay down I struggled to see. I know the place is flexible but this time the rake seemed really low and I guess it wasn’t helped that the playing area is the same level as the front row of seating

Broadway has been very good to me. But then, I've been very good to broadway.


#7 Anthony

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Posted 23 June 2012 - 05:38 PM

I saw this the other night as part of the WhatsOnStage group outing.  I've now had time to think about it. I had seen the film many years ago and only really have vague recollections of it.  I know that one of the reasons that I watched it was that Matthew Broderick was in it (Ferris Bueller will always be my hero) and  am very aware of Harvey Fierstein and had my reservations as but truth is, I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would.

Although not a huge fan of David Bedella (I had seen him on other things) he won me over in a very complex role.  Unlike others in this thread I didn't like the two younger cast members, Tom Rhys Harries (I thought he pouted too much) and in particular Perry Millward, but that's just me.  I did really like both females, in particular Sara Kestelman and the arguments that the mother and Arnold had- I've had those arguments- not about my sexuality as in the play, but about other things.

I also thought that Joe McFadden could have been stronger.

The way it was staged was also quite clever, with the back wall going further back as the plays progressed and time and the years passed. Well done to Douglas Hodge.

This is one of a several productions that I've seen at the Menier and again I was not disappointed.
Don't we get to be happy? At some point down the line, don't we get to relax without some new tsuris to push me yet further from you!

Who dare tell the lambs in Spring what fate the later season brings?

#8 Latecomer

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 08:46 PM

Saw this today and thoroughly enjoyed it. Came to the story completely new so real surprises along the way and thought the production was very clever here and there....loved the scene on the huge bed with people popping up in turn.
Moving at the end. Made me think about how difficult family relationships can be. Loved Bedella, both women and the cute blonde bombshell that is Tom Rhys Harris.
Oh and the food in the meal deal was delicious. B)
A definite 4 * production for me.

#9 savethekakapo

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Posted 18 July 2012 - 08:11 AM

I agree well worth a visit- good cast and well staged and directed.
Most recent theatre:July = Chariots of Fire, Richard III, Country Wife, Mack and Mabel, Physicists. JUNE = What the Butler Saw, Collaborators, Posh, The Thing About Men, Torch song Trilogy, Lillies, Duchess of Malfi, Jekyll and Hyde, Mystery of Edwin Drood. MAY = Ragtime, Antigone, Wild Swans, Tale of Two Cities. APRIL = Salena Jones, The Glorious Ones, Drugstore, Steps, After Miss Julie. MARCH = Floyd Collins, Bingo, Wizard of Oz. FEBRUARY = Hayfever, Singing in the Rain, Masterclass, Sleeping with Straight Men, Ladykillers. JANUARY = After the Turn, Children of Eden, She Stoops to Conquer, Crazy For You, Backbeat, Rock of Ages, Shrek, Matilda, A Round-Heeled Woman. 2011 DECEMBER = Reason To Be Pretty, Pippin. NOVEMBER = Goodbye Barcelona, How the World Began, Juno and the Paycock, Britanicus, Kill Bill, Railway Children. OCTOBER = Driving Miss Daisy, Sweeney Todd, South Downs & Browning Version! Decade, Conquer, Crazy for You, Backbeat, Rock of Ages, Baker's Wife, Sweeney Todd, South Downs & Browning Version, Decade and My City.

#10 Honoured Guest

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Posted 31 July 2012 - 10:42 PM

I found this faintly embarrassing every time David Bedella shouted and Arnold came over all smug and self-justifying. Obviously I missed the point of this revival because the play mostly seemed dated in a bad way. Call me prejudiced but I think it's just too American - fat, simplistic, ingratiating. I'd prefer to see something a bit more relevant - like Charley's Aunt perhaps...




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