Tonight I visited the Royal Court Theatre and saw a performance of Wanderlust.
I took the underground Victoria line to Victoria station, switched to the Circle line and hopped off at Sloane Square.
I’ve recently become obsessed with the Court as a result of all the research I’ve been doing for my thesis, so I am very happy to actually see not one, but two productions there. Tonight was Wanderlust. Monday will be Clybourne Park.
Instead of having programs or playbills the way most theatres do, the Court sells “programs” or rather, the actual playtext for 3 pounds. I love this idea. I’d much prefer to own the text than just a list of the people who worked on the show, especially if I end up falling in love with the show.
So of course I bought the two texts for the shows I’m seeing this trip, as well as a show (Spur of the Moment) that just closed but received a lot of buzz and good reviews and an in-yer-face show (Mojo) from the 1990s that I’m watching a production tape of on Wednesday.
As for Wanderlust, I think it’s still to early to say how I felt about it. My initial reaction was favorable. I really enjoyed the show but I don’t know if I feel like it was anything noteworthy.
The dialogue was witty, the actors executed the story effectively, I felt the right emotions at the right time and didn’t feel like the play was contrived, but it didn’t seem like anything too special. Perhaps this is because it lacked shock value? Then again, I’ve been so wrapped up in the plays from the 90s, with gruesome scenes of violence, explicit sex and coarse language, so in comparison, Wanderlust seemed tame.
There was one scene where the blocking really stood out to me — a bar scene where the two couples kept walking past and bumping into each other in this open space. There were no set pieces to create the area, but the feeling of trying to walk through a crowded bar was perfectly conveyed. It also made me feel uncomfortable, since the husband and wife were each out with someone other than their spouse.
After seeing Wanderlust, I’m really excited to see Clybourne Park, since I’ve heard nothing but good reviews on that show. [I’d heard nothing about Wanderlust.]
Tomorrow I’ll be visiting the Globe Theatre, taking a tour there and watching a production of The Merry Wives of Windsor. Also, since the Globe is on the River Thames, I’ll probably check out the end-of-summer festival that is happening down there. Other than that, I don’t have anything specifically scheduled till Monday. I’m thinking I’ll hit up the National Gallery and do a guided tour and I want to get tickets to another show via TKTS. I’m just now sure what I really want to see. I’m debating between Billy Elliot and Stomp… or both? Ahh, decisions.