WORTH A LOOK?: ****
WHERE: Duke Of York’s Theatre
WHEN?: 8/10, runs to 14/1
Ronald Harwood’s 1980 play is based on his experiences as dresser to English Shakespearean actor-manager Sir Donald Wolfit, who is the model for the character Sir.
- Read on for details of how the TV version of this play won a best actor monsta
The 1983 film was nominated for Oscars for its leads and the 2015 TV version starring Sir Anthony Hopkins as Sir won one of our very own monstas for best TV/film actor.
Lovers of the theatre will revel in the glimpse backstage as dresser Norman (Reece Shearsmith, giving us a hilarious mix of campy gossip and occasional aggression) tries to cajole an unwell and ageing Sir (the imperious Ken Stott) to give us his 229th Lear.
The production is well cast with Selina Cadell’s hard-nosed stage manager Madge eventually pulling at the heartstrings as well as Sir’s fingers and Harriet Thorpe’s Her Ladyship happy to be the butt of one of the show’s funniest running gags.
We didn’t catch the original play nor the film but the Hopkins/Sir Ian McKellen version last year was so good that this fine new production, given a fresh eye by director Sean Foley, can only suffer slightly in comparison.
Looking for the funniest comedy running in the West End at the moment? Look no further.