I sadly have to disagree with these positive reviews...
I love the novel, but having it read out for 8 hours simply did not translate into a satisfying theatrical experience. In fact, I'd go as far as to say 3/4 of the show was dull, and that is because a lot of the time it is just Scott Shepherd reading from the book, with very little else happening on stage. And I can't say I thought his performance was brilliant - he read most of it with minimal energy, so much so that it became a monotonous drone at points.
It seems odd to call an 8 hour production lazy, but I really think this is. Aside from the useful advertising gimmick of reading the entire novel, a proper adaptation could have been so much more thrilling. For instance, the scene in the hotel room, the 'I never loved you scene', was deprived of real tension or emotion by the constant injections of 'he said', 'she said'. It simply isn't interesting to watch someone walk through a door and then say 'I walked through a door'. But apart from the lazy translation to stage, I found the staging itself lazy. As I mentioned, for much of it Scott Shepherd is alone on stage reading, and the only really imaginatively, excitingly staged scenes are Myrtle's party and the reunion between Daisy and Gatsby. The rest, whilst with some nice moments, very unfocused and ultimately dull.
The audience leapt to its feet at the end... though that included the numerous people in front of me who had been asleep for much of the fourth act. I leapt to my feet too in fact, because my legs needed a stretch! As much as I love theatre, 8 hours of it proved quite testing, especially when it is as static as this was.
Can't say I'd recommend it. Especially for £70. Most of it wasn't theatre, it was audiobook.
nikkiiiannaMember Since 20 May 2012
Offline Last Active Jun 26 2012 05:44 PM
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