Review – 2,000 Feet Away, Bush Theatre

Wednesday 18 June 2008

Well, what kind of review can a production expect when it is advertised to start at 8pm, has unreserved seating requiring you start queueing at 7.45pm and finally admits you into the auditorium at 8.25pm without apology or explanation.

And  – even though it is only 90 minutes long – you get out at 10pm and have to find your way home from Shephards Bush.

It also features Ian Hart whose interview in The Times this week started thus:

Theatre fans, Ian Hart has something to tell you. “I hate theatre. I hate doing it. And it’s not the medium I wish to work in.” It gets worse. The 43-year-old firebrand actor, who is midway through rehearsals on Anthony Weigh’s controversial paedophile drama 2,000 Feet Away, hates you, too. “I hate the audience,” he says, over chicken Caesar salad in a South London café.

“I have a big problem with the audience. I don’t feel the desire to engage them. Which is what theatre is all about.”

So, it’s written by Anthony Weigh, directed by Josie Rourke and also stars Joseph Fiennes. Some people are quite good in it and the play’s OK in some ways. But it’s sold out anyway.

Queueing at The Bush

Half an hour of standing in this, then a play.

11 Responses to “Review – 2,000 Feet Away, Bush Theatre”

  1. RoseT Says:

    Ouch! To be fair, I was in that queue, and Artistic Director Josie Rourke came out twice to apologise that there would be a late start owing to a (not unusual, apparently) water leak in the theatre. Sound and lights had to be checked before they could allow in the paying audience, but she was fairly sure that, owing to the relative shortness of the play, no-one would miss their bus home – I guess you weren’t on the bus!

    The play was thought-provoking, and superbly acted by the entire cast, adults and children alike. Ian Hart even managed to inspire a moment of compassion for a paedophile – that must be a first…

    You never know, they might extend the run, and then others can see it too!

  2. Ehr guys, was that the review?

  3. @ RoseT: Presumably you were near the front of the queue and not where we were – near the back between the loud Americans and the loud Australians.

    @ feignedmischief: Sorry, Simone.

  4. Andrew Field Says:

    Rose T:

    Try ‘Happiness’ or ‘The Woodsman’, or even Simon Pegg in the Brass Eye Paedophilia Special.

  5. Sounds like an utter waste of an evening.

    BTW, Forever Plaid and Betwixt are both playing until Sunday, both highly entertaining and relatively cheap shows.

  6. It does sound like an utter waste of an evening. But it isn’t.

  7. Helen Smith Says:

    Try The Wire, Series 1-4 available on DVD now.

    Like Cranford, there are whole episodes where nothing really happens, meaning there’s plenty of room for characterisation and the acting is outstanding. Clarke Peters, Dominic West & Idris Elba are in it – all wonderful.

  8. @ Andrew (WEW): I am seeing it in 2 weeks time, I’ll come back here and maybe remind you of the ‘okay’ evening. 😉

    @ Ian: Thanks for the heads up!

  9. Anon Says:

    Post deleted.

  10. webcowgirl Says:

    (That post above is surely a joke?)

    Well, I’m off to see the Dickens Unplugged thing Thursday, which I’ve been assured is a great time from my somewhat picky uncle … let me know if you want to come with.

    Also, Chalk Garden is sold out for the rest of the run. I’m a bit bitter.

  11. @ webcowgirl:

    We shall, I think, give Dickens Unplugged a miss, but thank you for asking. It’s proving a bit of a political hot potato over at the Guardian blog and I think we had better steer clear. We are not ones to court controversy.

    Sorry that Chalk Garden is sold out but that’s what happens when (a) the Whingers give something a glowing review and (b) you do not act immediately on our exhortations.

    Pray for a transfer.

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