Showing posts from September, 2017

Mr Darcy Loses the Plot @ The Lowry, Salford.

It isn’t often that I head into the dark unknown world of theatre. Usually I will have read a copy of the play beforehand, or at least seen or heard of the playwrights work. Not this time. This was unchartered territory, but I was assured it would be a thoroughly enjoyable evening with plenty of laughs. From the very start of the play, it immediately becomes obvious that Maggie Fox and Sue Ryding have a great passion and knowledge of English Literature. They have been writing and performing together since 1985 putting their unique brand of humour on the UK and international stage. Looking through their past hits which include The Picture of Doreen Gray; Inspector Norse and Withering Looks, you know you are going to spend the evening being purely entertained; it isn’t going to be a night where you walk out of the theatre feeling drained or needing to dismantle a complex plot. The Guardian has called LipService Theatre Company “ the Laurel and Hardy of literary deconstruction

After The Dance – Terence Rattigan @ Theatre by the Lake

I’m a bit of a Terence Rattigan fan. I’ve enjoyed watched Flare Path, The Deep Blue Sea, (copious times but I imagine that may also have been for another reason!) When the Sun Shines, French Without Tears & Love in Idleness; so I was delighted to see that Theatre by the Lake were putting on a production of After the Dance, one of  Rattigan’s lesser known plays.    Unlike many of his other works, whilst After the Dance was a critical success it was a major failure with audiences; it closed within two months of opening in 1939. Rattigan had dropped out of college to become a full time writer, a move which had led to him to making a deal with his father; he could live at home and write for two years, but if by the end of that time he had had no success he would take up a more respectable profession. As the months rolled on Rattigan became more and more desperate as each project he immersed himself into came to nothing. Rattigan had penned a play about his time at a French board

Miss Julie – Theatre by the Lake, Keswick

The Writer Written in 1888 by the Swedish writer August Strindberg, this “Naturalistic Tragedy” focuses on the tale of Miss Julie and two of her servants Jean and Kristin. To understand the play, it is perhaps wise to try to understand a little bit about the writer first.   August Strindberg was born in Stockholm in 1849. His mother died when he was 13, his father remarried and he hated his stepmother. He attended the University of Uppsala and had various jobs, working in newspapers, teaching and libraries. He tried and failed as an actor, and his early attempts at writing were met with rejection.  He married the actress Siri von Essen in 1877 and he achieved his first critical success with his satirical novel The Red Room in 1879. In 1882 he wrote The Swedish People, attacking the nation’s values and earning himself many enemies. In 1883 he moved to France yet his writings still continued to cause outrage in his homeland. In 1887 he moved to Germany and a year later to D