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Posts Tagged ‘Elliot Hadley’

Whilst Kevin Elyot’s last play, Twilight Song, has recently been staged at the Park Theatre (https://garethjames.wordpress.com/2017/07/20/twilight-song), his first, written over 30 years before, has been revived at the King’s Head Theatre. Neither are up to the (small) main body of his theatre work, but both prove interesting pieces in completing the picture of an important late 20th century playwright.

Tony and Greg have been in a relationship for five years, though it’s an open one; both have one night stands. When they employ out-odd-work actor Robert as a cleaner, it tests the relationship. A fourth main character, Tony’s very camp and very promiscuous friend William, seems to be there to bring life and humour to an otherwise rather dull situation.

It’s a first play by someone starting out as a writer and that’s exactly how it feels. The longer first half goes nowhere and the much meatier second half ends abruptly and inconclusively. The promiscuity seems very much in period, but the long-term relationship seems more contemporary. The talk of sex is more frank than you might expect in the theatre at the time it was written.

Adam Spreadbury-Maher’s production, with an excellent design by Amanda Mascarenhas, and the performances of Lee Knight, Jason Nwonga, Tom Lambert and Elliot Hadley, serve the play well, though I found the casting of the same actor as William and Jurgen off-putting – impossible to keep the moustache and change the character, it seems!

I’m glad I caught it, to complete my Elyot ‘collection’, but beyond that it’s a very good production of a flawed first play.

 

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