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Before The Party, Almeida Theatre


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#1 fringefan

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Posted 22 March 2013 - 03:36 PM

I saw the first preview last night and had no idea this would be such a hoot.  I was struggling with tiredness (it doesn't finish until gone 10 pm), but it's worth trying to stay awake for!  A few fluffed lines but otherwise firing on all cylinders - I predict a hit.

Also, by sheer coincidence, a great contrast to Rutherford & Son, which I saw at the matinee.  I know it has been much-praised, but it didn't live up to my expectations.  This was definitely the order in which to see the two, though, i.e. long, serious family melodrama followed by family farce.

#2 peggs

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Posted 22 March 2013 - 05:46 PM

ohh goody!

#3 itsuckstobeme

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Posted 22 March 2013 - 06:55 PM

Seeing this in a few weeks, really looking forward to it - though the trailer on the website doesn't excite me that much.

#4 fringefan

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Posted 23 March 2013 - 05:18 AM

View Postitsuckstobeme, on 22 March 2013 - 06:55 PM, said:

the trailer on the website doesn't excite me that much.

Re the trailer:  I honestly think it's appalling in format and should be the subject of a health warning.  It doesn't tell you much about the play but is genuinely difficult to watch (jumps about and has several little screens playing at once) and made me feel quite ill.  I think it might be harmful if watched by anyone who actually had some sort of sight (etc) issue.  I did mention my concerns to the Almeida but they didn't even acknowledge my comment, let alone look into the matter, so be warned!

#5 Trev

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Posted 27 March 2013 - 01:06 PM

Saw it on Monday and completely agree with fringefan - a hoot. Brought back fond memories of Absolute Hell at the National but this has a wonderful cynicism all of its own. I would say hugely enjoyable and book now!

#6 itsuckstobeme

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 06:20 PM

Really enjoyed this, there are some cracking one liners. I just loved Stella Gonet's performance as the mother trying to keep up appearances, but all performances were strong.
I was sat in a 'restricted view' seat but I couldn't see what was restricted about it, I had a fantastic view. Definitely worth checking out.

#7 mallardo

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Posted 10 April 2013 - 10:07 PM

Rodney Ackland turns out to have been a first-class practitioner of the well-made play - everything works,every character is an original, right down to the Nanny, superbly played by June Watson.  His sense of structure is impeccable. One never gets ahead of a plot which piles revelation upon revelation until it ends up in a place that couldn't have been imagined at the beginning.

It's also laugh out loud funny despite the fact that it deals with intensely serious issues - a kind of black comedy before its time.  The actors are all terrific, in part because they have such great material to work with, but Katherine Parkinson and Michelle Terry as the battling sisters stood out for me - their second act confrontation was quite sensational.  Matthew Dunster's production seems to get the style and the era - post war late 40s - exactly right.

After a dull patch the Almeida is very much back in form with this one.  Absolutely recommended.
Excuse me if I seem jejune
I promise I'll find my marbles soon.

#8 Ian

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Posted 12 April 2013 - 06:43 PM

View Postmallardo, on 10 April 2013 - 10:07 PM, said:

After a dull patch the Almeida is very much back in form with this one.  Absolutely recommended.

Dark Earth was highly accalimed and a sell-out, Almeida (also Hampstead) seem to be taking over from the Donmar as the IT place to be.

There was a good production of Before The Party at the Apollo Theatre many years back, it is a fine piece.
The engine roared, the motor hissed,
And who could see that the road would twist

#9 jaqs

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Posted 15 April 2013 - 10:34 AM

Really enjoyed this.
Brightened up a rainy day, the costumes were beautiful and the cast were all terrific.
And it was so so funny. The comic timing from the sisters and the nanny was fabulous.

The gent next to me kept nodding off, was worried he'd fall on me but his wife periodically prodded him, he woke himself up when the word prostitute was shouted though.

#10 wickedgrin

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 12:34 AM

Completely agree with Mallardo's comments above. Really enjoyed it. It was played very broadly for laughs - no bad thing, but I did wonder if it would have been played like that originally or slightly "straighter". I was not familiar with the play so it came as a very unexpected treat.




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