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Cocktail Sticks/hymn, West End Transfer

Duchess Theatre

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#1 paultheatre

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 12:52 AM

Direct transfer after run ends at the National in March.

8 week run.

#2 Pharaoh's number 2

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 09:26 AM

Surprising, but good news. I've seen Cocktail Sticks and thought it was superb. I presume they'll be played as a double bill?



#3 xanderl

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 10:30 AM

That is a surprise - I noticed a few offers for this so didn't think they'd done all that well.
"witty ... both made me laugh but also gave me pause" - Mark Shenton, The Stage

#4 Pharaoh's number 2

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 11:20 AM

The Sunday double bills (of which there are 4 or 5) are all sold out, but the 6pm pre-People slots aren't. They've had v good reviews though.



#5 Snciole

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 11:59 AM

I think 6pm is too early and hence why people have been avoiding buying tickets through fear of being late and missing it. I work by Lambeth Bridge so I am five minutes from Waterloo by bus BUT I don't finish work until 5.30, factor in getting the tickets (especially if the machine isn't working) and walking behind slow people to even get to the NT in the first place.

Maybe not everyone is as cautious as me but there is a reason most shows start 7-7.30 because it gives even late finishers (6pm or so) time to get to Waterloo after work.

#6 armadillo

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:11 PM

View PostSnciole, on 04 January 2013 - 11:59 AM, said:

I think 6pm is too early and hence why people have been avoiding buying tickets through fear of being late and missing it. I work by Lambeth Bridge so I am five minutes from Waterloo by bus BUT I don't finish work until 5.30, factor in getting the tickets (especially if the machine isn't working) and walking behind slow people to even get to the NT in the first place.

Maybe not everyone is as cautious as me but there is a reason most shows start 7-7.30 because it gives even late finishers (6pm or so) time to get to Waterloo after work.
  The 6pm platforms are usually very well-attended  and the NFT do perfectly OK with 6pm showings. Personally I love early showings - I hate finishing work at 5 and having to hand around for 2 hours

#7 Pharaoh's number 2

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:50 PM

6pm is perfect for me, coming out of London. Means I can do a 2 show day and be back at a reasonable hour, or stay on and catch a third show.



#8 Nicholas

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Posted 17 March 2013 - 07:17 PM

Spare ticket be damned, I'm just back from a double bill and I'm truly taken aback.  Infinitely better than People (which I felt very positively towards anyway, though it did seem diet-Bennett), this is frankly one of Bennett's best.  I refer mainly to Cocktail Sticks.  I came out of Hymn truly touched and amazed, but Cocktail Sticks is a truly exceptional piece of work.  When Alex Jennings first walked out, and when he first spoke, there were gasps, and indeed my heart did a little jerk when I thought "It's Alan Bennett!".  It was only at the curtain call for Cocktail Sticks that Jennings' smile betrayed him as Jennings, but by then he'd deserved it (frankly, he was better than SRB in Collaborators and deserved the award, in my opinion, so I'm hoping there's some award waiting for him here).  And Bennett's as funny, witty and down to earth as you'd expect, with all of Bennett's twisted take on reality and subersions of expectations that you get in his best work.  But yes, this is astonishingly affecting, so well written and acted (supporting cast all exceptional too) and makes a great double bill.  SEE THE TRANSFER.  As a Bennett lover I'm biased, but I felt Hymn was a genuinely affecting miniature (like a great short story of his, which I think is vaguely its genesis) with music used in an unsentimental and non-manipulative way - alone, I'd think it a gem - but Cocktail Sticks, wow.

#9 vickster51

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Posted 28 March 2013 - 10:59 AM

I saw this double bill at the Duchess on Tuesday evening and I was surprised by how much I loved it. I didn't know what to expect, after missing both at the National but I thought that putting both pieces together was very effective. The themes across both pieces shine out and the last few moments of Cocktail Sticks link it perfectly back to Hymn and the themes or childhood, family and our memories of them.

I enjoyed Hymn but I too preferred Cocktail Sticks, which I found to be an incredibly moving piece of theatre. It made me laugh, stirred memories of my own family and brought a tear to my eye at the end. It goes without saying that the acting is superb and I was lucky enough to be able to listen to some of the cast's thoughts about the production in the Q&A afterwards.

I would definitely recommend it.

#10 xanderl

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 07:48 AM

Agree with the above - I thought Cocktail Sticks was so much better than Bennett's last two (or possibly three!) plays

Alex Jennings reverted to his own voice for a charity appeal at the curtain call which was very jarring!
"witty ... both made me laugh but also gave me pause" - Mark Shenton, The Stage





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