Moira+I went to see the “Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory” (SATTF) Company’s version of Tom Stoppard’s play “Arcadia” last night at the Tobacco Factory Theatre (hope that’s not too confusing?). In truth, I’m not a massive lover of Stoppard’s work (no doubt, my loss some would say). This play is a very clever alternation of scenes set in the same room of Sidley Hall, Derbyshire 200 years ago and in the present day… and combines Enlightenment values, Byron, landscape and literature with chaos theory, the second law of thermodynamics and the quest for knowledge (not surprising then that it takes three hours to put this across to the audience!).Given the SATTF’s fine reputation, the cast is predictably strong (although I personally didn’t warm to Piers Wehner’s depiction of Septimus Hodge or Jack Wharrier’s Valentine - again, my loss perhaps?) - I thought Hannah Lee, as the precocious, vibrant and tender Thomasina, was excellent.
Moira+I both agreed that the production had been “really quite good”(!). Not the best theatre we’ve seen this year, but a thoroughly entertaining and stimulating evening nevertheless.
Photo: courtesy of SATTF website (Graham Burke).
PS: Although I knew the play itself, I’d completely forgotten (how awful!) that we’d actually seen it performed at the Bristol Old Vic ten years ago!