Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Theatre 2016: Review Eighteen

Threepenny Opera, Oliver Theatre, National Theatre, London. June 2016.

This was a show that has been on my horizon for a while as surprisingly it was Mr Norfolkbookworm who suggested that it would be a good thing to see. (Rebecca and I were easily persuaded!) I knew nothing at all about it - not even the one catchy tune!

This not knowing anything about the play? musical? opera? paid off again as I just fell into the spell wonderfully. This is a Brecht show and so you are never going to feel comfortable but the famous alienation was spot on for me.  Every time I just got settled and thought I knew what was happening there was a twist, a moment of discomfort from either the visuals or words, or even the cast addressing the audience directly but this kept me on my toes and keen to know what happened next. I particularly liked the way that the violence was handled in such a stylish way, and also spotting all of the other cultural references that fitted in seamlessly.

Afterwards the three of us sat over dinner and discussed what we'd seen for ages. Each of us had taken something different from what we'd seen or noticed something different on the stage. Mr Norfolkbookworm was probably the least enthusiastic about the show - he'd recently watched the 1930s film version and found the live version to be just so different - but Rebecca and I were in agreement that if time and funds allowed we'd be seeing this at least once more to spot more of those little details that we'd been talking about.

My one request from this outing - that my two companions could at least keep to the same time & key as they "sing" Mack the Knife.

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