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Peter And Alice

Grandade Noel Coward Dench and Whishaw

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#161 Reich

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 09:34 AM

It’s Follies meets Finding Neverland!

I really enjoyed this as it found so moving and brilliantly acted. Perhaps some of the characters are underwritten and I can’t stop wondering what it would of looked like if Simon McBurney had directed it … but still I was very engaged, I learnt little and I’m sure it will stay with me for a long time

5 stars from me

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


#162 jaqs

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 10:37 AM

I went sat night and was a bit underwhelmed. I was in the balcony (best balcony in westend, roomy, tonnes of legroom, but a few empty seats despite the house full sign outside) and maybe you need to be up close for this one.

On the plus side all the actors were audible and I think made the best of the material, it just didnt capture my attention. Maybe if I didnt already know of the real lost boys it would have been better, I knew nothing of alice so concentrated more in those parts.

#163 Monteverdi

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 11:41 AM

two days on I'm still replaying every moving funny moment of this....I've been truly haunted but this.

#164 Cat6

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Posted 10 April 2013 - 05:48 PM

View PostMonteverdi, on 08 April 2013 - 11:41 AM, said:

two days on I'm still replaying every moving funny moment of this....I've been truly haunted but this.

"Haunted" is my favorite word in any arts review. Thank you! (Almost there! My tix are for  May 9 or something like that.)

#165 CAA

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Posted 11 April 2013 - 12:54 PM

View PostReich, on 08 April 2013 - 09:34 AM, said:

what it would of looked like if Simon McBurney had directed it

I love this idea!  I think if McBurney had directed the play and mabe he will in the futue?  On past form there wouldn't have been a toy theatre set, but perhaps back projections a few nude people on stage maybe even Alice !  I doubt it would make anymore sense as a play but would be either hailed as a materpeice or a dud.

#166 Monteverdi

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Posted 11 April 2013 - 03:56 PM

I'm not sure what's not to make sense in this play - all made perfect sense to me. Loved it so much, and I am still boring everyone senseless about it.

#167 Nicholas

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 02:05 AM

View PostMonteverdi, on 08 April 2013 - 11:41 AM, said:

two days on I'm still replaying every moving funny moment of this....I've been truly haunted but this.

I went with the family, and that was the reaction from the other three.  Would that I could agree.  But for me, the points were clunky and the dialogue was clunky.  There were moments – the suicide of Michael standing out – where emotions were suddenly stirred, but that only highlighted the lack of emotion I felt throughout the rest of a play which ended up feeling like a chronological slog.  The real bitter note was struck by the final line, which oversimplified Peter’s 63-year-long life – I’ve forgotten the specifics, but it suggests Peter’s actions were relatively imminent and there was causality from the events in the play whereas it happened 28 years later and other aspects (which themselves are explored here – family tragedies and drinking) were factors in what he did.  Obviously facts and history don’t need to be one – if so, I was very wrong about the Donmar's Julius Caesar – but here Logan wanted them to be so here Logan should have played by his rules.  And Peter's life and Alice's life seemed to make plays on their own which then occasionally crossed.  Peter's life was much more eventful than Alice's and I didn't feel that was balanced.  The play was at its best when a discussion as opposed to a biography and was much too often just biography.

Somewhere in here there’s a great play, but instead we have half a passable play made better by Dench, whose performance is one of subtlety and pathos that fizzes with variety, like characteristics are on dials she can turn without my noticing, here more chilish, there more knowledgeable, and Whishaw, whose subtle nuanced performance will stay with me.  Nicholas Farrell, the biggest Olivier oversight, was horribly underused.  The real problem is that the facts felt like revision.  I knew the bare bones of Peter’s story (I still only know the bare bones), and I felt that impeded my viewing.  It shouldn’t – I read A Doll’s House a few years ago and yet Wednesday was one of the greatest productions I've ever seen – and yet here it did.  I knew what was coming round the corner, and all that was coming round the corner was a fact and an aphorism that didn’t always work.  But Alice’s story, which I didn’t know, felt like revision too!  The exposition clunks, and just adding “Let’s go fight injuns!” doesn’t un-clunk it.  The point with which I most agreed was that gin is good.  Hohum.  And it could have been great – there were moments of magic.  It needed greater fluidity from Logan and sparkle from Grandage, because at times it had both and those times make me understand how other people found it haunting - as I say, I'm outnumbered in the family view, so perhaps I'll wake up disagreeing with what I've written today.  But for me, it sacrificed being haunting for being educational, and that was a misstep.

P.S.  Sometimes somebody does it better (to continue a Bond link), and this from the Independent says what I want to but far more phithily.  "Parts of the duo's conversation run like a census questionnaire, with added trite philosophising".

P.P.S.  It occurred to me that, after this, on stage I’ve now seen 1 Bond, 2 Ms, 2 Moneypennys, 1 Q, 2 Villains, 1 Bond Girl and 1 other (Rory Kinnear).  I’m sure people can top that as I’ve never seen the likes of Dianna Rigg or Stephen Berkoff, but I’m rather proud of that.

#168 Lynette

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 11:21 AM

Just to say for you groupies out there, as we were passing the theatre last night[ out from Donmar]  looking for nice place to have a cuppa, [found ice cream parlour just off St martins opposite[ we saw Dame Judi holding court to a group at the front of the theatre where her car was waiting. Seemed v jolly and she was def signing and chatting.

#169 THG

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 11:27 PM

Does anyone know how high the stage is for the Grandage plays from the front row in comparison to others? Is it as high as the Novello (which at 6ft I found very high with a lot of the stage not visible), or is it more like Wyndham's or Apollo Shaftesbury? I have front row tickets for Henry V.

#170 Coated peanut

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Posted 24 April 2013 - 12:16 PM

I firmly belonged into the underwhelmed part of the audience for this one. I couldn't quite see what the play was trying to say ( take the blue pill and live in denial like Alice, or take the red and kill yourself in despair like Peter? All children's classics involve some type of childhood trauma?) and decent performances by actors could not quell the dreaded 'are those 90 minutes over yet' feeling. Though when it comes to performance, I wouldn't mind if the person playing young Alice would never attempt portraying a child again.

I actually welcomed someone's mobile going off mid performance as a pleasant distraction, counting how many rings it would take them until they managed to switch it off.




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