A night of tingling, powerful, mesmerising, inventive theatre at its very, very best.
We saw the wonderful two-part version of JE at Bristol Old Vic in March 2014. I’m not going to repeat myself (about the set, devising process, actors,musicians and the like!), so you might want to click here for a quick re-cap.
Would it really be feasible to cut a fantastically successful production so ruthlessly? Well, without doubt, it was. Thanks to Cookson’s vision and the ability of this very special group of actors and musicians, the Company has managed to devise (and revise) a stunning adaptation of Bronte’s book “Jane Eyre an Autobiography”. It was a hugely exciting evening of drama and discovery as the audience joined the Company on a journey of dramatic improvisation and magic – with the entire team of gifted, multi-tasking actors and musicians playing their parts in a quite extraordinary way.
I thought this production was even better than the two-part version and, surprisingly (given the shorter time – albeit at more than 3 hours in length), thought that it also managed to add something to all the key characters (in terms of depth and sensitivity).
The production has played to enthusiastic, capacity audiences throughout its time at The National Theatre (and received glowing five-star reviews). It finishes there this weekend, before travelling back to Bristol (briefly) and then on to Nottingham (briefly)… and then on to Hong Kong (briefly). If you CAN get to see it (yes, ok, maybe Hong Kong is a little bit of a trek!), then I would really recommend that you do.
A very special evening… that will stay with us for a very, very long time.
Photo: Felix (Rochester) and Madeleine Worrall (Jane Eyre), courtesy of the National Theatre website.
PS: Moira+I were both exhausted at the end of the
performance (in a very good way!)… which only served to underline the amazing
stamina of the actors+musicians – who had taken part in a MATINEE performance
that same afternoon!