8 November 2016

Blue Heart at Orange Tree Theatre was a great disappointment

Orange Tree continued its flip-flop between old and new plays with a revival of two one act plays written by Caryl Churchill twenty years ago. I went because I go to everything at Orange Tree Theatre. This time my tour of the front row took me to seat A34 for £20.

The Orange Tree Theatre website was honest in its description of the two plays:
  • Heart’s Desire sees a family awaiting their daughter’s return from Australia, though in a series of alternative scenarios, the play collapses as it keeps veering off in unexpected and ridiculous directions.
  • Blue Kettle tells the story of conman Derek and the five women he misleads into believing he is their biological son. Try as he might, Derek’s plans are scuppered as the play is invaded by a virus.
It also said "the plays pull apart language and structure in a way that is theatrically remarkable" and that was my problem with them - it was all structure and no substance. They struck me as plays that somebody might have written at drama school when told to experiment with a specific technique to learn how to use it before putting it in a proper play, one that tried to entertain.

I had no complaints with the staging or the acting. Just the plays. I was only relieved that I had seen them locally and had not wasted much time getting there.

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