What do they know of theatre who only theatre know?
Tuesday, 16 March 2010
Sometimes body language says it all. At the press night of Penelope Skinner’s Eigengrau at the Bush last night, I was sitting opposite two of our most eminent critics, Quentin Letts of the Daily Mail and Tim Walker of the Sunday Telegraph. Because it was a traverse staging, I couldn’t help but notice that both these grey suits spent most of the play with their noses deep in the playtext. You have to admit, it’s a great image: two Oxbridge, public-school, Eng-Lit-besotted critics with eyes downcast, reading the play and ignoring the production which was going on in front of them! Of course, I can sympathise with them: the blow-job scene was pretty sad, and the self-mutilation bit excruciating. But you’d think they would have watched the rest! So, if you ever need a visual image of the nullity of so-called celebrity critics, just think of these two Tories with their heads bowed and eyes glued to the text!
“There’s nothing more terrifying than a teenager with something to say! You mark my words gel, you’ll be running this country! Even if you’re too pig ignorant to see it now!” (Glenda in Clara Brennan’s Spine)