ARTYFACTS: Day 20: Women Dream Horses

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Day 20: Women Dream Horses

This was far removed from the normal Anglo-Saxon idea of theatre, which is why I liked it. I’m tiring of British theatre with its inward looking, petty cultural obsessions. ‘Yes Minister’ at Chichester, is a good example. Clearly playing to retired, countrified, Colonel Blimp audiences; a retread of a TV series on the stage.

This group of Spanish misfits took the edgy theme of women, horses and sex to rip open the psychological guts of a family. The three couples fought, sparred and joked with Chekovian reverence for off stage action and events. The drinks that were never drunk, the meal that never came. The killing spree at the end meant no respite for an audience looking for resolution. There was courage in the writing and the action.


Anonymous frank mccabe said...

Donald - I would argue that 'The Chichester Experience' no longer defines what British theatre is about. That sort of ossified mainstream work that seems to be trying to reverse time and take us back to 'the good old days' is becoming scarcer (cf. The death of what we know as conventional 'rep').

The reason much of the inspirational and progressive work we see at the Festival is foreign is simply because it's the cream of the crop. There's plenty of dross in Sapin, Germany and France too. And don't get me started on New York!

My issue is with subsidy. Why should public money go to support such ossified offerings as that offered (most of the time) by Chichester. If it wants to exist and pay for itself, then fine. It'll die out as its audience does. But having it propped up by the taxpayer like Norman Bates' mother is criminal.

2:41 pm  
Anonymous frank mccabe said...

Apols for "ossified offerings offered". It was a rough night...

2:43 pm  
Blogger Donald Clark said...

Couldn't agree more Frank.

6:08 pm  

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