Music by Cy Coleman, lyrics by Michael Stewart, book by Mark Bramble
With revisions by Cameron Mackintosh and Mark Bramble
Directed by Timothy Sheader
Chichester Festival Theatre in association with Cameron Mackintosh
Venue: Theatre In The Park
Date: Monday 29th July 2013
When we left this performance we were as one with our rating of the experience, but not for the usual reasons. Tonight things had gone wrong, and our enjoyment had been vastly improved as a result. Not the usual effect, but then this is theatre.
To begin with, this was our first visit to the Theatre In The Park, Chichester Festival Theatre’s temporary home while the main building, itself a ‘temporary’ venue, is given a large dose of TLC. The old dear doesn’t look well at the moment with the lettering removed and the boards up, but I’m sure she’ll be back in action next year as promised, and in much better shape.
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Nancy Meckler
Date: Tuesday 23rd July 2013
Another impressive preview from the RSC. Directed by Nancy Meckler, this production of All’s Well uses modern settings and costumes to good effect, with performances to match. There’s still some scope for improvement – the opening scenes were a little slow – but like Lafeu, my eyes smelled onions by the end. We had central seats in the stalls so we had a good view of all the action, and apart from one mobile phone going off the audience was pretty well behaved.
By William Shakespeare
Directed by Kenneth Branagh and Rob Ashford
Manchester International Festival
Venue: Ritz cinema, Worthing
Date: Saturday 20th July 2013
This was our first time watching a live broadcast of a theatre performance in a cinema. It may not be our last, but that won’t be from choice. As this was the only way we were going to see this production I’m glad we did it, but as we suspected the cinematic process reduced our enjoyment by a huge amount. Still, it looked like a great production in many ways and from the massive number of curtain calls, the Manchester audience clearly loved it; wish we’d been there.
By Harold Pinter
Directed by Jamie Lloyd
Venue: Trafalgar Studio 1
Date: Thursday 18th July 2013
The heat definitely affected my enjoyment today, as the Trafalgar Studios simply don’t have air conditioning worth the name. And having experienced cinemas in Hong Kong where we had to wear a cardigan indoors because of the chill, there’s no excuse for the sort of heat we had to endure today. Of course, if it was difficult for us it must have been hell for the actors, especially with those suits, but at least they could get off stage from time to time to cool down, and with only forty-five minutes each way it was just bearable.