A View From the Bridge, The Young Vic, London. May 2014.
This play has been received wall to wall rave reviews everywhere - unusually the press and social media reviewers all agree. We felt that we were very lucky to get tickets to this.
Well I supposed there always has to be a dissenting voice...
The play strips out any props or scenery and is played on a thrust stage which is a white box with a perspex rim. The actors all talk in a Brooklyn accent and the setting is kept as Miller intended.
I'm not sure if it was because I didn't know the play in advance but I found this blank setting to alienate me from the words and I just couldn't connect with the plot at all. This version also plays straight through with no interval and I found that, unlike most of the reviews, that this didn't allow the tension and tragedy to build for me and I just didn't care enough.
The actors were all very good and there wasn't a weak member on the stage but ultimately I just didn't care and when the ending came I didn't think that it was tragic at all. Just a relief!
I've since read the script of the play and Miller is very, very descriptive in his writing and gives pages of stage direction - all of which was discarded here. Perhaps this would have worked better for me if I'd seen a traditional staging first?