On Friday 13th May I went up to London to see Mike Leigh’s play Ecstasy at The Duchess Theatre on Catherine Street.
This is the first time I’ve been to the Duchess and it’s a great little theatre. Pretty small and with a wonderful little bar very reminiscent of a 1970s episode of Department S.
I’m a great fan of Leigh’s films and this, of course, influenced my viewing of the play. It seemed far more planned than his films and I guess this is because of the improvisational nature of his directing style in film. A lonely woman has some friends around for some drinks and all loudly and drunkenly proclaim their long lasting friendship and the woman engages just enough to appear involved. When the friends start to depart her loneliness gets the better of her. Cast includes Sian Brooke, Daniel Coonan, Claire-Louise Cordwell, Allen Leech, Sinead Matthews, Craig Parkinson.
The following day I had a look around Tate Modern and the Miro exhibition. The building continues apace in central London and modern apartment blocks have sprouted up behind Tate Modern. The Miro was beautiful and I was particularly struck by some of his earlier work portraying his family farm. Also the latter denser and more iconic work was very good.
Then on Monday the 16th I saw some dance named Counterpoint at the Komedia in Brighton. I have very little experience of dance but this was worth watching. From the start there was a fantastic buzz in the audience, probably brought about by the large number of kids who had turned up. Appropriate really as the second piece seemed to be a sex education lesson including erection and condoms.
The last piece was the most dramatic. Two dancers dangled around on ropes and swings about our heads. Ver effective and entertaining.