Thursday, 24 February 2011
Creating a drama
Last night I went to the theatre. Not that unusual, I probably go one or twice a month. But last night I saw the best thing I have ever seen on the stage (so far): Frankenstein at the National. It was directed by Danny Boyle whose film work I greatly admire but how, I and the rest of the audience wondered, would he manage in this very different medium? In a word: tremendously. Of course it helped that he had a great cast but he delivered a play which emphasised the humanity of the creature - a monster because we made him so. The opening sequence in which we see the Creature emerge from its artifical womb, bloody, naked, vulnerable, was won of the most mesmorising I have ever seen. Last night the Creature was played by Benedict Cumberbatch while Jonny Lee Miller was the misguided egotistical scientist (the schtick of the play if they need one is that Cumberbatch and Miller will switch roles every night). Both were extraordinary. I would also give a special mention to lighting and design teams on the production which were simple yet exceptionally powerful. Get a ticket if you can.