Dickinson College Humanities Program in Norwich

Theatre in London is Cool

September 21, 2010 · No Comments

I saw five plays in my time here in London, and found the theatre to be one of my favorite aspects of the city. My favorite was Les Miserables, although I sat in the absolute back row and was very far from the stage. The music was tremendous and the acting spectacular. I especially enjoyed the spinning stage, which, although I recall hearing in our theatre tour that it is not altogether uncommon, I had never seen before. 39 steps, while not high theatre, was a lot of fun. The Hitchcock feel of the whole play was really enjoyable and the physical comedy was great. The use of only four actors had me feel like I got to know the actors, not only the characters. This was especially true for the two male actors beside the main character, they were extremely likeable and the four actor format helped foment that. Bedlam was a disastrous play but still a decent experience. From Bedlam I learned that the a bad play is a whole lot more fun than a bad movie, and started me to thinking that plays are a way I would like to spend my evenings. This is despite a complete lack of direction or solid musical numbers and a cast that became almost disinterested by the end of the performance. I also noticed that due to the Globe’s choice of lighting, in which the entire stage is rather evenly lit, the play was at times hard to follow, because it was impossible to know where exactly to look. Merry Wives of Windsor was funny, although I got quite lost at the end of the play unfortunately. After a long day of walking, standing at the theatre was particularly hard for me that day. The Habit of Art was an overall failure in my opinion. It took some excellent themes and fears and excellent acting and buried it in a clumsy and unnecessary frame. We had some genuinely moving scenes between Britain and Alden which could have been drawn out and extrapolated on, but instead we had a lot of little side jokes mainly based on the ‘play in a play’ format.

Overall, the theatre in London has changed my perspective, I’ve realized that a night out with a show is extremely enjoyable. If I had vacation time here I think I would see three to five shows a week. If I lived and worked here I would do the same. It’s very exciting, the theatre scene here and the fact that any night on a limited budget I can go see so many shows, both classics and experimental, new shows.

Categories: 2010 Michael · Theatre

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