Sunday, March 30, 2008

Shaffer’s “Sleuth”


There were two Shaffers – Anthony and Peter – twin brothers, both playwrights. The play we saw yesterday in Bath was by Anthony and I think we were the only ones in our immediate vicinity who hadn’t already seen the play or the film, so we were very absorbed. The Olivier part was played by Simon MacCorkindale. He must be very familiar with “Sleuth” as he directed Douglas Fairbanks junior when he was a member of the theatre scene in Los Angeles in the early eighties. I had imagined he would play the younger man – but of course time does not stand still – he played the elder and Micheal Praed the younger.

It is a very wordy play - full of cerebral games, but the actors took it at a cracking pace and one had to concentrate to keep up. Simon gave a mannered performance, a bit camp at times - reminiscent of Olivier in ‘Dance of Death’ but it really worked and one was carried along with the plays twists and turns.

Michael Praed was new to me but the two of them had forged a great partnership and the coup de theatre in the second act took me by surprise. An excellent show – see it if you get the chance. A real ‘edge of your seat’ thriller. It’s set in the early seventies and reminded one of those ghastly shiny suits some men wore. We gave the cast a tremendous ovation which they thoroughly deserved.

Bath was wet and windy and curiously deserted. We were meeting # 2 son and missus for lunch and I had to warn him before he got close that I had my PCA’s in. He usually envelops me in a bear hug and ruffles my hair – bless him! We had booked a table at Las Iguanas in Sawclose just by the theatre. We were first there but it was soon buzzing with families and children – obviously locals – always a good sign and we had a lovely time.

On the way back the coach driver took a different - more interesting route and I got a rainy shot of Glastonbury Tor. No more theatre for a while but we have a trip to Cardiff to see the ballet. No time to be bored: tomorrow the Sussex branch appears – maybe the last time before they leave to live in OZ. No tears will be allowed.


kenju said...

How are you doing with the PCA's? I'm so anxious to get mine.

You lead an interesting life, Pat. We stay close to home more than I'd like.

Anonymous said...

I'm very pleased to see that Michael Praed is still as gorgeous as he was as Robin Hood in the TV series 'Robin - the hooded man' - you lucky woman!

I've never managed to sit through 'Sleuth' the film - I think it must be because it's on TV and you cannot concentrate on dialogue in your front room as you can in a theatre.

Wasn't Angharad Rees married to Simon MacCorkindale at one point? Or am I thinking of the wrong (female) person?

Cuisine - if it was Las Iguanas I think the Brazilian guess must be right or perhaps more generic - South American?

Oh gosh, I am running late for work, I really must get on but with the clocks going forward, it is really hard to persevere.


PI said...

Judy:I'm liking them. Kate said I am averaging using them 9 hours a day. Most days I'm doing chores in the morning or writing so I put them in after lunch. It's important to follow the instructions like taking them out or putting them in over a bed or sofa. I am reminded regularly to be careful with them and the other night - forgot I had them in, put my sponge cap on and then wrenched it off, A minute later I realised - to my horrror, my left one wasn't in and - thank heaven -there it was on the carpet! All was well. I'm hearing very much better and was able to eavesdrop on the coach to Bath:)
Our interesting life has been diminished since MTL's atrial fibrillation so we make the most of what is possible.

PI said...

Belle: I would like to see more of Michael P - will look out for him now. Simon is married to Susan George- has been for about 22 years. She was an actress and now looks after their Arab stud farm and they have had a production company for years. Angarhad was married to Christopher Cazenove and tragically they lost their son in an accident in 1999. She is now married to someone else. I don't know about him.
I never get the same satisfaction - for whatever reason - of seeing films at home - too many distractions.

Casdok said...

Yes there are too many distractions at home!

You certainly get around!

Anonymous said...

Pat - noted you seemed to flit seamlessly to my Canada photos from my house ones. Need to check if there is a funny in there. Can you recall what happened?

Ah, now I recall those showbiz marriages.

Cheers, belle

R. Sherman said...

I'm glad you had fun. More to follow with the second half of the family, I'm sure.


Guyana-Gyal said...

Reading about plays and other interesting shows is exciting for me...we don't have many here.

sablonneuse said...

You are so lucky to get out and about to the theatre etc. My husband has never been interested in live performances of any kind.
That's the only thing I really miss about living in London.

PI said...

casdok: gotta have something to write about:)

Belle: I am a bit of a rash clicker. I think I was trying to move to the lower row of photos and when it didn't happen clicked everything in sight. I must curb my clicking.

Randall: girls outing before that I think.

GG: but you make your life there
one big theatre honey.

Sablonneuse: this aint London but we are lucky to have what MTL calls 'the granny bus' to take us for our dose of culture.


I take it Simon has recovered from 'Manimal' then? Good grief was that a bad show. Only a truly talented actor could recover a career from that!!!

PI said...

4D: sounds interesting. Tell me more please.

zoe said...

I'm not keen on theatre either - it comes across (to me) as several people shouting at one another so that the audience can hear.

I did enjoy (for a while) a play that my parents took me to see in London last July, but it got really bad towards the ending and my mum and dad were hopping to get out!

I'm so glad that you enjoyed your night out with the girls - may there be many more:)

PI said...

Zoe: that's the funniest thing I've read about theatre going in many a long year. I've got to go and tell someone!

Eryl Shields said...

I love going to the theatre, and opera, but we only seem to manage it about once every two or three years, now we live so far out in the sticks. If it's not on my doorstep I don't know it's happening.

PI said...

Eryl: I guess I should be thankful this isn't quite the back of beyond.

Sam, Problemchildbride said...

Have fun with you family, Pat. It'll be hard to watch them go so far away but all the more reason to treasure this last visit.

Kanani said...

Sorry to hear about the rain, Pat. Ah well. It's getting cold again here, as well, which is highly annoying as I want warmth!
I miss going to the theatre, opera and even large museums. It's not like it's impossible for me to get to --I can take the train into downtown L.A., but lately it's been one of ticket prices! However, last year we did a "last minute rush" ticket purchase and say Turandot for $15.00!

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

That is a fabulous looking Restaurant, but I don't have a clue to what kind of food they would be ssrving!
Sounds like a wonderful afternoon, Pat...I like Simon McC., very much, and "SLEUTH" very much, too!
I love hearing about your Theatre Afternons, so very much!

PI said...

Sam: they told me yesterday they hope to come again in July- before they leave - so that's great. It must be awful if one only had the one.

Kanani: this is all nmade very easy for us - booking is done, transport provided (it's an Arts Group) and not terribly expensive. As our travelling is very restricted we don't begrudge the cost.

Naomi: it was sort of Mexican- they call it Latin - very tasty.
Makes me realise how lucky we are to have this facility and shouldn't take it for granted - as we do.