'GIVE ME A 1 FOR 1984'
AT THE PLAYHOUSE THEATRE (LONDON)
When I got up this morning I thought, 'WHY NOT STARTING WITH HAMLET, STARRING BENEDICT CUMBERBACH AT THE BARBICAN? Then I realised that I want to leave that post for another time, when I feel more confident in this new blogger world.
So here I come with a fantastic play based on the novel by the same name: 1984 (by the talented and famous writer George Orwell). I'll try to answer some questions that could be of interest in case you're in London (the city by the Thames river, the 'land of dreams', the 'field of poetry', the grass where Shakespeare spread his ink with tender and passion) and you're thinking about watching it or you're not in the city yet but you'd like to spend a weekend as a Theatre Alcoholic.
- Why did I watch this play?
When I go to a play, where I'll be spending two or more hours of my life, I always make this question to myself.
Well, in this case, the answer is simple: my lovely and amazing host recommended it to me!!!
That first day in London I was a little bit lost as there are so many places to go and things to do that I found hard to choose something interesting.
Fortunately, my host, who has become a friend now and who encouraged me to start with this blog, was right. THE PLAY IS SUPERB!!!
So, as a conclusion, I bought a ticket for 1984 because someone recommended it to me. It's something that happens sometimes and it can be worth it. In this case it really was...!!!
What to do in other cases? Of course, in other cases, the best thing to do is to explore the different plays going on and read the reviews. TimeOut (theatre section) is a good page to be sure of that.
- What about the play?
You enter the Playhouse Theatre and some of the lines you read in George Orwell's novel come to your mind. You start thinking about the Big Brother, the opression, the political control and about how the world has changed. Then you sit down and the show starts. You lean forward on your seat and get ready to enjoy the play!!!
A big screen at the top of the stage showing Winston's diary, where he writes his lines. His hands being filmed at the same time he writes 1984 on a piece of paper. Then all the lights turn off and the room where he was on his own becomes crowded...Then the Dystopia starts!!!
The Big Brother controls everything. Each movement, each meeting, each word out of context but it doesn't stop Winston falling in love with Julia, a rebel who wants to DAMN THE BIG BROTHER!!!
The impression of being in two different worlds, in two paralel realities gives you the sense of not being free, of being stuck in the same place all the time, an eye on your shoulder doesn't give up looking at you. A hectic reality, flashbacks, rebelions, repeated situations...all in one play. And GOOSE-BUMPS assured!!!
The walls opening up (showing the reality behind them, the TRUTH maybe), the strong rebelion ( and Winston's torture are so powerful that your eyes will keep wide open without any doubt. So if you're one of those people who tend to fall asleep in the theatre, you'll not this time.
Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan did a wonderful job by co-writing and directing this new version of 1984. The combination of playing on stage and in front of a camera which films some of the character's actions makes the audience experience the contradiction of what's real and what's not, let them think about how much the Media takes control in their/our lifes. Even a tender kiss taking place behind the stage wall can be filmed. WHERE IS THE PRIVACY THEN?
Maybe there's no privacy any more in our lifes. Maybe we're being puppets in the middle of nowhere, being tortured unconsciously, being damaged without an explanation, being controled by the Big Eye. But MAYBE, we can change it!!!
- Information of interest
I didn't want to spoil the play by giving too much information, cause I think you have to experience it by yourselves. I only dare to give you some tips about what you should do in case you'd like to watch it!!!
1. THE NOVEL BY GEORGE ORWELL: If you didn't read the novel yet it's time to do it. It's easier to understand the play. Make it your bedside table book!!! (However you don't need to, but it's a very interesting book)
2. HOW TO GET TO THE PLAYHOUSE THEATRE?: The nearest tube station is Enbankment, but you can also get off at Charing Cross. You can find more details in this link:
3. THE BEST WAY TO GET TICKETS: I guess that you'd like to watch as much theatre as possible by spending a small amount of money. Here comes my recommendation (there are different ways to get the best tickets):
- Get your ticket in this website: http://www.es.lastminute.com/
(It's gonna be cheaper. I couldn't manage it cause my credit card was not working, so that I had to find another way)
- Go to a box office: you'll find many box offices around Leicester square or Picadilly where you can find bargains (However, I would say there are better options, so leave it for the end, when you start feeling desperate...)
- Go to the Playhouse Theatre and try to get cheap DAY TICKETS or RETURN TICKETS: this is, for sure, the best option. Go to the theatre about half an hour before the show starts and answer for day tickets, they are the best price ones. You'll not spend more than £15 if you succeed. And £15 for a west end show is more than worth it!!!
The thing is, HOW DID I SUCCEED? Well, I got the tickets in a box office in Leicester Square, so that I spent a little bit more (£22), because I was not into this world yet. If I had known that I could have got day tickets I'd have saved £7.
And here I am, after watching the play!!!
MÁS FELIZ QUE UNA PERDIZ, as we say in Spanish...
More posts about other plays will come soon. Keep an eye on them!!!
JUST LET THE PLANE TAKE OFF, AND LET IT FLY HIGH