Day 215

Level 2 Chi Kung.

Great excitement amongst the children as the beautiful Madalina came to babysit while Nick and I went to the theatre. It was one of those occasions where I booked the tickets so long ago, that I couldn’t really remember anything about the production we were due to see, so I was delighted when I looked it up on the NT website and was reminded that it was the new David Hare, Behind the Beautiful Forevers.

Sadly, with the exception of the Old Vic’s execrable production of Much Ado, it was probably the worst play I have ever seen. A story of life amongst rubbish sorters in Mumbai, it featured a malevolent woman (with an uncanny resemblance to Sheela Reddy) who seemed determined to make everyone’s already grim lives even worse.

An hour in, when the lights went up, I turned to Nick and remarked that, as the cast hadn’t taken a bow, I was afraid it must only be the interval. To which he said, with considerable feeling, ‘I really think we should leave.’. Although I felt guilty (Calvinist upbringing and all), once mentioned, the prospect of a quick end to the agony was irresistible. Darting furtively into the lift, I thanked Nick for suggesting that we escape. At which point there was a gasp of recognition from the other couple in the lift.

Man: [conspiratorially] That’s what we’re doing too…
Lady: We would never usually leave early but it was so dreadful
Man: A mixture of really grim and utterly tedious…
Lady: and no dramatic tension
J: And I was really looking forward to it because David Hare …
Man: I KNOW, he’s usually so good.

I would love to say that we escaped to a lovely meal but sadly we went to the restaurant at the Royal Festival Hall and it was barely adequate. Best part of the evening was getting home and chatting with Madalina!…/behind-the-beautiful-fo…

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