Following its acclaimed run at the National Theatre and in the West End, James Graham’s political drama This House will begin a UK national tour at the West Yorkshire Playhouse on 22 February 2018. 1974. The UK faces economic crisis and a hung parliament. In a culture hostile to cooperation, it’s a period when votes are won or lost by one, when there are fist fights in the bars and when sick MPs are carried through the lobby to register their vote. It’s a time when a staggering number of politicians die, and the building creaks under idiosyncrasies and arcane traditions. Set in the engine rooms of Westminster, This House strips politics down to the practical realities of those behind the scenes; the whips who roll up their sleeves and on occasion bend the rules to shepherd and coerce a diverse chorus of MPs within the Mother of all Parliaments. … Read more
What pleasure the play offers comes in the characters Hare has carved from fragments of history. Roger Allam, almost unrecognisable as John Christie, does a superb job, totally transforming himself into a funny, fussy, oddly dressed Opera lover. He makes eccentricity part of the fibre of Christie and superbly shows his extremes: his anger about Glyndebourne when things don’t go his way; his gentle adoration of Audrey; his unflappable belief in the inherent value of Opera as the most sublime aspect of humanity.