Hay Fever, Noel Coward Theatre, May 2012.
This theatrical trip was nearly a disaster. Once more there were huge rail problems on the day of the outing, however this time I'd always planned on going the slower, indirect route and consequently missed all of the trouble. It was a good feeling to outwit the trains for once.
I'd not seen any Noel Coward plays before this one. I've seen some of the films he scripted and read a few of the plays but I wasn't sure what to expect, especially as reviews have been so mixed.
I loved it. It was laugh out loud funny, the cast worked as a whole, the set and the costumes were fantastic.
When we arrived at the theatre we were expecting to be seated in limited view seats in the Upper Circle however as we tried to get in to the theatre we found we'd been upgraded to the fifth row of the Dress Circle in seats that were far more expensive than the ones we had paid for. Sadly the reason for this was because there weren't enough people in the audience to fill the Dress Circle let alone that and the Upper... I hope it was just a quiet day because the play is very good and deserves to be seen.
There are a lot of famous people in the play - Lindsay Duncan, Jeremy Northam and Olivia Colman being the biggest names, but it wasn't about them at all - it was a true ensemble piece without a weak link. The acting is quite over the top, but only as the script demands and the physical comedy was just as funny as the script. I shall now be looking for more Coward plays to go and see.
The lasting impression of the play - I really want some silk pyjamas and a silk dressing gown to swan around the house in - the elegant cigarette holder is an optional extra.