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Theatre, darlings? What plays/productions have you seen and liked?

(45 Posts)
Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 13:27:39

When I was about 15 a friend and I got really into the theatre, for some reason. I think we felt terribly grown up, swanning round with our interval drinks, etc,but it was fun, and we saw a lot. Then in my year out before uni I worked as stage crew/electrician/carpenter in a few local theatres, and very nearly chose that as a career.

I haven't been for ages - we have now moved quite near a really good rep theatre, and really want to start going again. Have seen some cracking productions, and wondered if anyone else had favourites?

In particular I loved a production of The Crucible in the Royal Exchange, Manchester, in about 1988-9 - really compelling - great play, obv, but the theatre in the round setting made it really claustrophobic and unnerving.

Any other favourites?

Bink Thu 30-Oct-08 13:40:32

Last year's Punchdrunk Red Death, and the year before's Faust - they're not doing one this year sad and I hadn't woken up to them before Faust - oh I would have liked to see their Macbeth and their Oedipus and everything -

The National Theatre's cycle of Mystery plays with Tony Harrison - all of them in a day (in the round, too) with the magnificent Brian Glover as a towering (bald, bruiser, Yorkshire) God

Seeing Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead is usually an early transfigurative experience for thesps wink

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 13:45:11

ooh - haven't seen any of those. Don't think Dr Faustus is quite the same! Although I did like that - Liverpool Everyman, I think.

I haven't come across Punchdrunk - do they tour?

Bink Thu 30-Oct-08 13:51:25

Punchdrunk site - all atmospheric & eerie - a little difficult to navigate, possibly on purpose!

No, not touring - their stuff is site-specific (and how). But having seen what I have I'd go the length of the country now.

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 13:57:05

Ooh - the Tempest one sounds fab. How spectacular! Will have to try to get to one of theirs. Thanks, bink.

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 19:37:17

Bumping for the evening crowd, assuming they aren't all out enjoying a show, darlings... why am I taking the piss on my own thread???

Stefka Thu 30-Oct-08 19:52:23

I would love to see punchdrunk's work! GridIron are another good site specific company. I enjoyed Decky Does a Bronco when it was on the go.

I loved Play without Words at the National a few years ago. I always see some nice stuff at the fringe too.

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 20:02:44

God, this is making me realise how out of touch I am! It really has been a very long time. Think the last thing I saw was prob Julius Caesar at the Globe. - different kind of good there, I think, as felt sort of immersed in "being a Shakespearean audience", so I remember that more than they play itself. Another one I loved loved loved was Derek Walcott's Odyssey in The Other Place in Stratford - just amazing.

Bink Thu 30-Oct-08 20:09:49

Habbibu - not sure how long you've been around, but when she's back from half-term <assumption but probably correct> bump for Marina. She is a treasury of this kind of info.

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 20:38:08

"not sure how long you've been around" - today? On MN? You're surely not asking my age, are you? <ladylike gasp>.

Is Marina a big theatre buff, then? Cool - thanks.

Bink Thu 30-Oct-08 20:40:50

we could have an age battle, like the one I used to at primary school. I used to win (and make the other girl cry) by citing my great-grandmother who was NINETY-THREE. And I am still likely to win, heh

It was just that, er, if you'd been on MN a, er, while, you'd probably have seen Marina dispensing relevant wisdom

hf128219 Thu 30-Oct-08 20:43:22

I like the Theatre - but Ballet is my passion. DH loves it too!

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 20:44:11

Um - been here 18 mo, maybe? Thereabouts, anyway, but I flit round a bit, and so hadn't come across much in the way of theatre threads, so I appreciate the tip. I've only just delved into culture vultures properly after Quattro bemoaning how no-one talked about poetry on MN, and then really felt like reminiscing over plays I'd seen.

Am going to hunt around for Marina's words on The Stage now!

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 20:46:03

hf, shamed to say I've only ever seen one ballet - The Nutcracker (as if you wouldn't have guessed!). I did love it, actually. Not sure dh would be overkeen, but I bet dd would like it when she's older. I was thinking about it after watching the TV programme - BalletHoo, was it? That was brilliant.

castlesintheair Thu 30-Oct-08 20:48:55

Peer Gynt sticks in my memory. And The House of Bernarda Alba.

whinegums Thu 30-Oct-08 20:49:09

Oooh, what a good thread Habbibu. I have loads of favourites. Anything by Robert Lepage, Maly Theatre, or Yukio Ninagawa. Told By An Idiot did some fab stuff in small venues, but didn't like the last one I saw - Casanova. Derek Jacobi in Richard II and Richard III in the same week, many years ago (when I was teenager, also swanning around with interval drink!). Antony Sher in Singer, one of the best written plays (by Peter Flannery) IMO.

Will have a think for some others. It's been far too long since I was really into it. Which theatre is now your 'local'?

castlesintheair Thu 30-Oct-08 20:51:15

And any Chekhov. The need to work. Reminds me of myself at the moment grin

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 20:52:42

Whinegums! A fellow teen swanner! I remember it so so fondly. I was lucky enough to spend most of my year out in the Royal Exchange, Manchester, and saw loads of good stuff then. Death and the King's Horseman by Wole Soyinka was good, and it was a good production.

We live near Dundee rep now, but I've never been. When I was a kid it was the Liverpool Playhouse and Everyman, which were brilliant.

misselizabethbennet Thu 30-Oct-08 20:53:38

I've become quite hooked on little visits to Stratford. I really like the courtyard theatre, even though it's only a temporary home. We saw Henry V in Jan - absolutely stunning. Also saw Mr Tennant as Hamlet in the summer which was v good. DS goes to his grandma's, we have a night in a hotel and a lovely after-theatre dinner at The Oppo restaurant. Bliss!

Next trip will be the Frodsham pantomime.

midnightexpress Thu 30-Oct-08 20:54:34

Saw great Shock-headed Peter in London a few years ago, also a great Beckett season at the Barbican about 10 years ago.

Now <dons Ponce of the Week hat> also saw a wonderful wonderful Orestia in Roumanian in London. The fact that the Chorus were all speaking in a completely incomprehensible (to me) language made them all seem terribly menacing and doom-laden. Twas thrilling.

The Young Vic used to do fantastic Grimm Tales at Christmas too.

Miss London atm. Moved north and have scarcely set foot in a theatre since.

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 20:57:25

midnight, there's cracking theatre in the North, honest. It's where I cut my teeth, after all. Whereabouts are you? W Yorks playhouse is supposed to be v. good, Liverpool theatures enjoying a bit of a renaissance, Royal Exchange was fab (and I hope still is), and Bolton Octagon, if it's still going, was pretty cool.

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 20:57:55

The Orestia sounds fab, mind.

midnightexpress Thu 30-Oct-08 21:01:16

I'm in Glasgow Habbibu, so not as if there's nothing on, and Embru just down the road. In my defence, I have two children under 3 so that accounts for some of my recent philistinism: we haven't even been to the cinema since ds1 was born.

Must get out more.

midnightexpress Thu 30-Oct-08 21:03:36

...and yes, it was really great. It gave me the willies, and somehow conveyed what it must have been like to live in a world full of terror (lightning WAH! Fog Oooooooh! etc)

Habbibu Thu 30-Oct-08 21:04:27

Ah, I see - that North! I lived in Glasgow for 8 years and saw... um ... er - about 2 plays. And 4 of those years were spent doing theatre studies. How shaming is that? No, we haven't done anything since dd (now 2) was born. Really do want to try, though. It's just fun, and more so than the theatre, for the whole experience thing.

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