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Thursday, 11 May 2017
Saturday, 1 July 2017
2 hours 45 minutes
Terrence Rattigan fought with this play. First titled Less Than Kind, he wrote and rewrote the characters throughout the later months of 1944, while war raged across Europe, and finally changed its name to Love In Idleness. This new production, another feast of theatrical excellence by Trevor Nunn, blends the two into a hybrid so good, so cringe-makingly funny that it's transferring from its original home at the Menier Chocolate Factory to the West End's glittering Apollo Theatre. Directed with verve, acted with consummate skill, it's a highly desirable theatrical experience and tickets are tipped to go like hot cakes.
What's the story? Eve Best plays Olivia Brown, a widow openly living 'in sin' with the married cabinet minister Sir John Fletcher. When her seventeen year old son Michael, a dedicated socialist, returns home from Canada where he was evacuated, he's distressed and furious about the situation. The brilliant Edward Bluemel plays Michael – an unpleasant young man – perfectly. Anthony Head makes a wholly convincing villain as Olivia's lover. Helen George plays Sir Fletcher’s pert wife with verve and flirtatiousness. And the whole thing is supported wonderfully buy the clever use of genuine WW2 newsreel footage. What a show!