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Damned By Despair

spare tix 4th October

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#31 dude-1981

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 09:36 PM

View Postxanderl, on 06 October 2012 - 09:22 PM, said:

At least it's got 20 minutes shorter!

Don't wear a watch but did something I never do and checked time on phone after the hanging.  When I saw that it had another 30 minutes to go to the reported end time I despaired!  Luckily it was over in 10.
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#32 Kathryn2

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 09:43 PM

It took ages to sort the noose out the other night - really obviously hooking onto a harness. Have they sorted that out yet? That would knock a minute or so off the running time!

#33 armadillo

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Posted 06 October 2012 - 11:02 PM

Haven't seen the play yet - have that joy to come - but I was in a pub behind the Cottesloe this evening and a bunch of people appeared c9.45 brandishing programmes and muttering. Since I assume they didn't leave half-way through the second half, it must have knocked a few minutes off

#34 Snciole

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 06:21 PM

I was surprised when the booking season was announced that this was going to in the one thousand and something seater Olivier because there were no big names (I can't bring myself to count Bertie Carvel as a big name, a big theatre name perhaps but not enough of a household name) and there was no big name director or writer to justify the lack of big names. Even Travelling Light had to get Anthony Sher and that had the relative big guns of Nicholases Wright and Hytner attached (plus it was in the Lytelton).

I managed to get free tickets for this, as I suspect a lot of the audience judging by the number of comp tickets in the tray if anything I was amazed there weren't more walk outs when I went to see it on the 5th October. It is just ghastly; slow, doesn't seem to have an audience in mind to aim itself to in marketing, no real drama or story to build up to and yet I stayed until the end. Mainly to write a horrible blog about it but also because as said earlier I couldn't take my eyes away from it; campy performances, what I thought was a bit of a racist stereotype (The National is better than this to use its black ensemble to play gang members but as a BME I might be oversensitive) and just a lack of energy from the stage that seeps its way into the audience.

A blog argued that theatre needs bad productions like Damned By Despair to learn from but not when it is costing people money though I am not sure how much, to be honest the set was very cheap and nasty; it could have sat comfortably in the Cottesloe and not be the dud it will envitably end up due to ticket sales and grumpy reviews.

It is very sad to be a regular at National Theatre (mainly due to Entry Pass) and see productions like this. On the plus side this will feature in my Turkeys of the Year 2012.

#35 Pharaoh's number 2

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 06:38 PM

Sales are pretty poor, but comparing a Thursday evening performance of this in mid-November (halfway through the run) with a Thursday evening performance fo The Magistrate a similar number of performances in, sales of DBD are not drastically lower. If the press reviews are terrible, will they close it early? (Greenland and Rocket to the Moon spring to mind).

Probably not, since it's already announced its last performance, and extended before it opened.

With Greenland, for example, it was supposed to extend into the next booking period, which was to be announced after the Greenland press, so after the awful reviews, they just didn't extend it and brought back Hamlet to fill in the gap. There's not enough time to do that here!



#36 Pharaoh's number 2

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 06:39 PM

I should say, also, that I gave in and booked myself another ticket (I couldn't make it on Saturday). I try and see everything at the NT, and I still regret missing Greenland... :lol:



#37 zyx123

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 06:48 PM

Could be worse, you could be traveling from the North West to see it. Looks like I'll be searching for another Sunday Matinee, I shouldn't have been tempted by Bertie and Leanne Best.

#38 dude-1981

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 07:44 PM

View PostPharaoh, on 08 October 2012 - 06:38 PM, said:

Sales are pretty poor, but comparing a Thursday evening performance of this in mid-November (halfway through the run) with a Thursday evening performance fo The Magistrate a similar number of performances in, sales of DBD are not drastically lower.

Interesting.  I compared the Friday night after press night of both shows for a fair comparison and The Magistrate has 400 tickets left and this has 300.  But, don't forget that:

1. This is a Travelex show so £30 top price rather than £47.

2. The Magistrate show is a good month or so longer away than this.
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#39 xanderl

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 07:51 PM

I guess the core of advance booking members will mean a similar level of pre-sales for most shows, but I would expect a lot of returns to be flooding in once the reviews appear.

This really was bad! Undercast, poor performances by the leads, shoddy set, a half-baked "updating" which had no point to it (unlike, say, Antigone or Timon).
"witty ... both made me laugh but also gave me pause" - Mark Shenton, The Stage

#40 armadillo

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Posted 08 October 2012 - 08:06 PM

Is this the least-famous cast ever to appear at the Olivier?. Except for Bertie Carvel, I haven't heard of a single one of them. Yes, I'm sure there'll be a chorus of people telling me how  many Best Newcomer awards they've all won but I've still never heard of any of them. And Bertie Carvel may have won awards but, like Snciole, I wouldn't actually call him a Big Name.




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