Monday, 2 July 2012

A bit of hanky-panky

Yes, I thought that might get your attention...

Into Act III, and the world has been turned upside-down. The status quo no longer has any meaning. Long-concealed resentments are brought into the open, and long-remembered chances missed are reflected on. There are some startling, funny, and very moving developments as all the characters are forced to re-evaluate  their presuppositions about their lives and their relationships. (As I said a few posts ago: I thought this was a comedy?)

When it comes to intimate behaviour, performers and director always have an interesting job. In this case, the merest hint of a real affection, attraction and chemistry must be shown in the briefest of moments. The evidence must be there for the wife in question to see. It was rather easier with the brash Lottie (remember, she's 'a woman', not a lady), accustomed as she is to 'carrying on with men behind t'bar'; but for gentle, repressed, buttoned-up Annie and Herbert, it's a different matter. This led to some rather interesting discussions. Might they kiss? Would he touch her? The waist, the face, the shoulder? A kiss or embrace which had seemed natural - even in the confines of Edwardian Yorkshire - for our 'young lovers' in Act I could seem a step too far for these two.

Oh, well. As one of the characters puts it in Alan Bennett's Habeas Corpus, 'King Sex is a wayward monarch'... especially when one is attempting to keep him in an appropriate chronological and social context.

Needless to say, we finished up in fits of giggles as Matthew and Kiera tried various degrees of intimacy, corpsing all the while...

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