Tuesday, 5 November 2013

'Liola' National Theatre, Lyttleton ****

The National Theatre has been providing an eclectic array of productions for the past fifty years and the revival of Luigi Pirandello's 1916 play 'Liola' is a brilliant production overall. The play set in 19th century on the small Itallian island of Siciliy suggests the themes of community and economic issues in their place in society. I think that Tanya Ronder's adapation of this quite social and political text has been highly successful and appealing to contemporary audiences as it does convey some of the issues that particular arease in the world are facing currently. The narrative's clarity is exceptional as it features a slightly misoganistic man called Liola and that over the course of the production we start to admire him as he is a brilliant father to three sons and will do anything to support his family. Of course in a legal fashion.The acting by the entire company were wonderfully presented here. I found Rory Keenan's acting as the lead male Liola to be one of such tenacity and precision that I began to understand the characters' motives to live and support his mother, Ninfa (Charlotte Bradley) and his three children Tinino, Calicchio and Pallino. Moreover, the performance by Jessicaa Regan as the slightly nieve Tuzza Azzara was extreely appealing as you can see that she has worked to a high standard of finish to embody a youngwoman who becomes pregnant at the hands of Liola. The direction by the National Theatre's former Artistic Director from 1988-1997 Richard Eyre is nothing more than outstanding as he directs a socially indepth production that encapsulates the idea of a tightly knit community and how what ever happens within the community will inveitably become common knowledge. A superb directng masterpiece and wondeful to see Eyre back at his former home. Anthony Ward's design is sublime as he has been able to craft a small Itallian community on a very subsidised scale that exudes perfection , especially in the choices of the textures that were used to make the design such a revelation of creativity. Travelex's annual £12 ticket deal has established the productions presence within the Lyttleton auditorium and it seems that it has been full every performance. I very much enjoyed my experience here. Happy 50th birthday to the phenomenal National Theatre.      

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