List the last 10 things you saw at the theatre in order:
1. Platinum (Hampstead)
2. Mr Popper's Penguins (Criterion)
3. King Lear (Barbican)
4. The Children (Royal Court)
5. Her Aching Heart (Hope Theatre)
6. Peter Pan (National; Olivier)
10. Henry IV (King's Cross Theatre)
6. Peter Pan (National; Olivier)
7. Kiki's Delivery Service (Southwark Playhouse)
8. The Sewing Group (Royal Court)
9. The Tempest (King's Cross Theatre)
Well the MVP was clearly Laura Pitt-Pulford's hair, but it was also attached to a good performance.
Why did you go to see number two (Mr Popper's Penguins)?
I go to the theatre most Saturdays. I see a matinee and an evening show. However with Christmas Eve falling on a Saturday this year, I simply could not find an evening show for love nor money. So when I found a morning show, I WENT for it. If I ever claim to be too old for children's theatre, I'll need one of you to put me out of my misery, because I will clearly already be dead on the inside.
Can you remember a line/lyric from number three (King Lear) that you liked?
NOPE. I mean, obviously by this point in my life I can remember an awful lot of lines from King Lear, but in the context of this particularly bloated and turgid production, there were none that I liked. Although I do stand by the idea that all you really need to know about Lear as a character is that he says "come not between the dragon and his wrath" and he's talking ABOUT HIMSELF.
What would you give number four (The Children) out of ten?
8. It wasn't as bleak as I'd been promised, but still delightfully melancholy and thought-provoking.
Was there someone hot in number five (Her Aching Heart)?
There were only two people in it, so shout out to both lovely ladies Colette Eaton and Naomi Todd!
What was number six (Peter Pan) about?
IT WAS ABOUT LITERALLY. THE SAME. GODDAMNED. THING. IT IS. ALWAYS. ABOUT. A pair of narcissistic serial murderers, neither of whom are as interesting as they like to think they are, and the girl who should be living her best life but patriarchy. Seriously, what is wrong with J M Barrie when he teaches this girl how to fly and brings her to a fantastical land of fairies and mermaids and pirates, and yet the full scope of his imagination just can't give her anything to do that isn't mothering a spectacularly useless set of boys or being captured? At least Ella Hickson did something about it, I don't know what this production's excuse is.
Who was your favourite actor in number seven (Kiki's Delivery Service)?
Matthew Forbes, obvs.
What was your favourite bit in number eight (The Sewing Group)?
At the beginning, it was very obscure. By the end, it was very explicit. There was a bit in the middle, however, where you had enough hints to work some things out, before the balance tipped, and I definitely thought that was the best bit of the play.
Would you see number nine (The Tempest) again?
Mathematically yes, as I've seen the other two in this particular trilogy twice each and The Tempest only once, but realistically no, as I don't have a lot of free time and also it doesn't matter how important and/or lovable a production is if you really fundamentally don't get on with the basic text.
What was the worst thing about number ten (Henry IV)?
I loved this one significantly more this time round as well, so the worst thing probably would have been that for a good chunk of the play I could hear bloody Lazarus pounding through the wall from the space next door. (Also I was repeatedly jolted by the use of 'Zadok the Priest', as I use it as an alarm tone to gently wake me up from naps, so every time it played I panicked that I'd done something assholish with my phone.)
Which was best?
Henry IV I reckon, with shout-outs to Kiki's Delivery Service and Her Aching Heart.
Which was worst?
OH MAN I AM SO DONE WITH KING LEAR ESPECIALLY AFTER THIS EXCEPTIONALLY LONG-WINDED AND DULL RENDITION.
Did any make you cry?
I honestly only actually remember crying at Mr Popper's Penguins of all things.
Did any make you laugh?
Mr Popper's Penguins, Her Aching Heart, and Kiki's Delivery Service.
Which roles would you like to play in any of them?
I no longer know if it's more important for me to play Regan or for me to avoid all forms of King Lear for the rest of my life. I will instead accept any male role in either part of Henry IV.
Which one did you have best seats for?
Her Aching Heart and The Sewing Group. I also had acceptably excellent seats for The Children and Peter Pan.