The National Theatre has announced that Lizzy Watts will take the lead role in the National Theatre’s UK Tour of Hedda Gabler which launches on 2 October in Plymouth. Lizzy Watts’ theatre credits include Strife at Chichester Festival Theatre, The Angry Brigade and Artefacts at The Bush, A Midsummer Night’s Dream at The Globe, Blink for Nabokov and Wasted for Paines Plough. TV includes The … Read more
The play strikes one as more comic, at least in the first Act, than it is played here under James Grieve’s direction. More Thin Blue Line and less Z Cars might have helped. James Graham’s writing, his focus on convention and protocol, should guide proceedings, and it does, at least to start. The opening scene goes a long way in the right direction, although the characters, all police, could afford to be more stereotypically quirky and fussy. Harry Melling, a supple and intriguing actor, always reliable, does the very best work here.
Merit has a timeless quality, examining themes relevant to any society going through economic upheaval. It also explores broader ideas such as our responsibilities towards others when money is short: Patricia questions Sofia’s decision to give to charity when people are losing their homes just as many people question whether countries in recession should continue to give aid to the developing world.