Friday, 6 November 2009

All the world's a stage

...And all the men and women merely players...

As Shakespeare once wrote.

Do you not agree, my lovelies?

Talking of which, the other night I went to ... the theatre!! For the first in what seemed like a very long time. Well I did take my A level students to the Globe a few weeks ago which was fun, but that was more educational and we didn't actually see a performance ...

Anyway the play in question was The Comedians by Trevor Griffiths. on at the Lyric in Hammersmith. Great theatre with an alternative style, decently-priced tickets, lovely food in the caff, but awful trying to negotiate a car round Hammersmith (I ended up on the way to Heathrow thanks to the nightmare one-way system). Anyway, that's besides the point. The play, as it turned out was pretty good, starring none other than Matthew Kelly, who certainly proved his acting credentials in this, being miles away from his zany "Game For a Laff" persona of yonder: Reece Sheersmith from "The League of Gentlemen" and former "Comic Strip Presents" star Keith Allen, who I haven't seen in anything for yonks and is now looking considerably older. The plot concerns six trainee stand-up comics due to take to the stage for the first time - assembling in a school classroom after hours and presided over by "coach" Matthew K; in the following act they then all do their "stint" on stage; then there's a post-performance reunion back in the school with the best comedians being offered contracts. It was very well-observed and performed - but contrary to expectations probably brought on by the title, not all about comedy. There's one particular bit I won't say too much about, but which involves the chap in the picture above - his "comic act" is the total reverse, being deeply (and I mean deeply) disturbing, uncomfortable, yet somehow rivetting, viewing. But as the friend who accompanied me to the play commented so accurately, the story shows the price you have to pay if you choose to live by your own standards rather than by those of society - that is to say, it's the two comedians who both perform to the lowest denominator who end up the 'winners' and the other, less "conventional" comics achieve nothing. Sod's law eh?

Anyway I won't say any more, but it's one worth seeing. And I really should be like fellow bloggers Nora and Alan and go the theatre more often. Or maybe just get out more, full stop!


  1. Who is the chap in the pic? Believe it or not I actually thought it was David Tennant!

  2. An actor called David Dawson? I see what you mean about the resemblance to DT!!

  3. Haven't been to a play in AGES! We did get out last night to the Rugby tho' (not quite the same but sort of theatrical!!), however a friend and I are writing a play - care to be the editor??

  4. The actor in the photograph IS David Tennant, at the 2001 touring production of The Comedians. Incidentally that production was also directed by Sean Holmes, who directed the one at the Lyric Hammersmith.

    The role of Gethin Price needs a star in the making, and David Dawson will be a big star.

  5. How weird, and thanks for clarifying that "The Other Bridge" - and welcome to my blog! I quickly searched the net for a relevant pic and didn't actually bother to check that it was DT. Well I never did!! Yeah David D was rather good. Then again he had a very unusual part to get his teeth into!