Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Theatre 2014: Review Eighteen

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?

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