Saturday, 17 January 2015

To Kill a Mockingbird

On Friday evening (which was a very cold evening!) I went into Bath to the theatre to see a new production of To Kill a Mockingbird. 
Daniel Betts and Jemima Bennet
It's a touring production by the Regents Park Open Air Theatre company, and was very good.

The book itself remains a part of the action, with the (adult) actors reading extracts from the book by way of narration, to move the action along.

I was surprised, to start with, as it's an unusual technique for a stage play, but it worked really well, allowing Scout's memories and views to be expressed without having to resort to extra conversations between characters, which can, of course, be a little contrived in adaptations of novels.
Zackary Momoh
The set is minimal - the cast draw a plan of the town with chalk, on the stage, at the outset. Other than a tree, with a tyre swing hanging from it, and various chairs,there is very little in way of set.

Daniel Betts was superb as Atticus Finch, (although he appeared a little too young), and Zarkary Momohas as Tom Robinson was very impressive, managing to convey both his fear and vulnerability, and his  integrity. 

The trial scenes were entirely acted, not narrate, and, even knowing the outcome, was utterly gripping.

I thought it was an excellent production. The play is now touring, finishing up at the Barbican this summer, and if it comes near you, I'd recommend it - well worth seeing!

I came out of the theatre to discover it was very cold indeed - I had to scrape ice off my car to drive home.

(Photos from the production website)

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