17 June 2008

The Deep Blue Sea by Terence Rattigan

Mrs Elton - Jacqueline Tong
Philip Welch - Anthony Jardine
Ann Welch - Rebecca O'Mara
Hester Collyer - Greta Scacchi
Mr Miller - Tim McMullan
William Collyer- Simon Willians
Freddie Page - Dugald Bruce-Lockhart
Jackie Jackson - Jack Tarlton

Directed by Edward Hall
Designed by Francis O'Connor

Seen at comfortable close quarters in the Vaudeville Theatre during an evening show that seemed to have sucked in a lost matinee audience. AZ3
Note to self: Don't get sniffy about seats near the front of this theatre. Very comfy with no neck strain and a generally very tactile experience. Furthermore, there is a wonderful secret parking place nearby.

If I said that my eyes blurred with tears on occasion it will be apparent that even this hard old nut can be cracked under the weight of a performance such as Ms Scacchi's. I should also mention that I shed tears of laughter almost every time Tim McMullan opened his mouth. No idea where he found that voice but it worked for me and the younger members of the audience.

The 'paying cast member' among whom I numbered gave a peculiar edge to the evening. The strangest mixture I have sat with in a long time and whilst many of them were overly distracting, I decided that the only way to enjoy this was to embrace their daft interjections (yes, one old boy kept shouting ' Oh, GOOD line!' whenever one popped up) despite the constant sniffing, coffee slurping and uncontrollable limbs of the woman next to me.

Recently read a piece saying that Rattigan is our Ibsen and seeing this so close on the heels of Rosmersholm, I can understand why. I could also argue that it was like Gaslight without the conscious introduction of insanity.

Wonderful performances by all and against the odds of this very silly audience.