Reviewed by Linda Pickford
Imagine you are on honeymoon in the south of France. Your balcony room is delightful with beautiful views and you can hear music playing in the distance. What could be more exquisite. Except the next room contains another honeymooning couple and the woman happens to be your ex-wife. You catch sight of each other and understand immediately that you still share a mutual passion. You decide to run away together leaving your hapless new partners.
There are two sets to this play and both are simple but impressive. The hotel balcony is very effective with the two rooms so close that the couples are able to view each other with ease and talk across the balustrade. We move to Amanda’s Paris apartment. Decorated simply but effectively with an elegant art deco set.
I really enjoyed the fast repartee between the actors. The well-known quotes “Very flat, Norfolk and Extraordinary how potent cheap music is”, were met with much amusement by the audience. The ensemble worked well together although I felt that Sibyl’s upper-class girly voice grated a little, becoming quite shrill at times. My favourite was definitely Kieran Buckeridge as Victor Prynne. His tall gangly body appeared to be held together with much effort as he tried to control his emotions and act gentlemanly. The scene where they all sat at the table drinking coffee was very amusing to watch. All trying to keep their manners whilst secretly longing to hit out. Brilliant.
Do try to see this London Classic Theatre production of Noel Coward’s comedy Private Lives, an enjoyable night out away from the pre-Christmas rush. Plymouth’s Theatre Royal will welcome you with their usual enthusiasm. There are ample car parks and eating venues nearby.
Tickets cost from £12 to £28 (booking fees may apply).
Private Lives is at the Theatre Royal in Plymouth from 20-25 November 2017, for more information or to book tickets visit www.theatreroyal.com or call the box office on 01752 267222.
Theatre Royal Plymouth, Royal Parade, Plymouth, PL1 2TR | 01752 267222