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#1 Parsley

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 10:03 PM

Good gracious.

2.5 hours (and more) listening to Jessica Raine bleating on (in what must be one of THE most supremely pathetic "great" stage roles ever written).

Was never so pleased as when she got a slap at the end.

Some weird, protracted and pointless set changes.

Spent the whole first 40 minutes squinting through the dark as the lighting was so dim.

Circle fans will be pleased to note that the beam that caused annoyance in Same Deep Water is still there and the set has been extended as far back as possible to impair the view for any side seats on the upper level.

I can see why Wesker is not performed often.

Soup With Barley was propelled by astonishing performances and The Kitchen was superbly staged.

Not the case this time.

The Donmar do put on some bum and mind numbing stuff sometimes.

#2 armadillo

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 10:14 PM

I think the Kitchen was both boring and ridiculous (all those tables where all all the diners ordered the same food). Glad to hear thay my first reaction to Wesker was the correct one

#3 fringefan

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Posted 05 October 2013 - 04:37 AM

Relieved for once, then, rather than frustrated that I will never be able to get the £10 Monday AM Barclays tickets!

I did enjoy the RC production of The Kitchen though, which was why I didn't see it at the NT when they did it so soon afterwards.

#4 mallardo

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Posted 05 October 2013 - 06:38 AM

View Postarmadillo, on 04 October 2013 - 10:14 PM, said:

I think the Kitchen was both boring and ridiculous (all those tables where all all the diners ordered the same food). Glad to hear thay my first reaction to Wesker was the correct one

"The correct one"? On Parsley's say so?
Excuse me if I seem jejune
I promise I'll find my marbles soon.

#5 popcultureboy

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Posted 05 October 2013 - 09:12 AM

I managed to get a front row £10 ticket for 14th October. The only disappointment for me in Parsley's summation is that the set is so crazy for the Donmar sightlines.

#6 Pharaoh's number 2

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 11:17 PM

Saw it tonight. I was sat in the side circle (the set once again stops where the circle starts, but sightlines not as bad as The Same Deep Water As Me though there is a massive beam which cuts off the actors' heads when they're at the back of the stage), and it was amusing to watch the audience sat in the side stalls block opposite me slowly diminish after each interval (there are 2 of them- it runs at 2hrs50, 20mins over the time stated in the programme, which also says 1 interval).

It's excellently performed. I like Jessica Raine a lot, and though she took a bit of time to get going (her accent was all over the place at the start), she's superb by the final scene. And Linda Bassett makes everything look so natural. The play itself does have some lovely little moments, but sadly for the most part it's just so dull. It's a classic kitchen sink drama, conversations are about the mundanities in life. That's all fine, but nigh on 3hrs worth is draining. There's very little plot to push it forwards, very little to care for. I stayed awake, but I was relieved when it was over.



#7 Parsley

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 11:33 PM

How interesting

There was only 1 interval when I saw it

How awful to have it dragged out even longer!

Lots of food onstage though

I liked watching that

#8 Loopyjohn

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 11:42 PM

Yes - lots of food.  And real food too.  The gammon smelled wonderful from the front row!  That has to be the biggest trifle I have ever seen in my life.

I enjoyed this.  Yes, it was long, stretched over 3 acts, and very light on plot, but despite all those things I didn't find it boring, thanks largely to the two central performances of Jessica Raine and Linda Bassett.   It all gets a bit preachy for my liking in Act 3, and it does that thing I hate of explaining the play's title.  In detail.   I was trying to think of any show I have seen that has been as dimly lit as this one.  Act 1 starts off dimly lit and just gets darker and darker.

#9 Parsley

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Posted 09 October 2013 - 11:48 PM

I wonder why they added a second interval in??

I saw second preview and there was only 1.

I did read somewhere though (I think or could have imagined) that it is usually done with 2 intervals.

There were lots of details other than the food, such as the filling of bath and washing of dishes that I also found fascinating.

Jessica Raine really did sit in the bath (although I did not see any soap bubbles or scum in the water when the poured it away).

I am VERY scrutinising!

#10 Epicoene

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Posted 10 October 2013 - 06:30 AM

View Postfringefan, on 05 October 2013 - 04:37 AM, said:

Relieved for once, then, rather than frustrated that I will never be able to get the £10 Monday AM Barclays tickets!

I did enjoy the RC production of The Kitchen though, which was why I didn't see it at the NT when they did it so soon afterwards.
Well hang on, the RC one was 1994 and the NT one 2011. There is a view that Wesker is a neglected genius whose plays don't get produced because he has been unjustly frozen out by a conspiracy amongst the theatrical elite. This view is most vigorously promoted by Wesker himself. My experience is that there is a simpler explanation: his plays don't get produced because they are hopelessly dated and the passage of time has rendered them boring, irrelevant and vaguely ridiculous. I think the only play of his I'd like to see is The Merchant but without any great hope that that wouldn't be terrible too.




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