Review: All My Sons

Sally Field and Jenna Coleman in rehearsals All My Sons, The Old Vic

Arthur Miller’s All My Sons was his second play, his first having bombed, and was written in 1947, just two years after the end of World War Two. The plot and the questions it poses about the economic circumstances of the individual in a consumer society, the morality of the individual in the community, and grief and family relationships, are all very relevant today. All of the performances in the current production at The Old Vic, London are energetic, intense and emotional, and set against a backdrop of just one stage set up of a traditional American family home, which the audience never actually see inside.

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All About Eve

Gillian Anderson and Lily James, All About Eve.Credit C Perou.

This week I saw All About Eve now showing at the Noel Coward Theatre, London. The live performance is also showing at regional cinemas, on screen.

We’re very fortunate in the UK in that live theatre is so prolific, whether a top London show, a regional theatre, or a local am-dram. When I read English Literature at Reading University I went to the theatre every week, sometimes twice a week. I wasn’t so sure, however, about watching a live performance filmed for the cinema. How immediate would the experience be? Where would the atmosphere come from? Would I miss the little touches that make up a live performance; the tuning of instruments in the orchestra pit, the possibility of actors emerging on cue from amongst the audience, something Chichester Festival Theatre, laid out in the round, does well.

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