NATIONAL THEATRE’S HEDDA GABLER COMES TO MILTON KEYNES THEATRE

Following a sold-out run at the National Theatre’s Lyttelton Theatre, the NT has embarked on a UK tour of its acclaimed production of Hedda Gabler and is at Milton Keynes Theatre 27 February – 3 March.

Lizzy Watts plays the title role along with Madlena Nedeva (Berte), Christine Kavanagh (Juliana), Abhin Galeya (Tesman), Annabel Bates (Thea), Adam Best (Brack) and Richard Pyros (Lovborg).

Just married. Bored already. Hedda longs to be free…

This vital new version of Ibsen’s masterpiece by Olivier and Tony Award-winning playwright Patrick Marber (Closer, Three Days in the Country) is directed by Ivo van Hove, one of the world’s most exciting directors. Olivier and Tony Award-winning van Hove made his National Theatre debut with Hedda Gabler, which ran in repertoire at the NT’s Lyttelton Theatre during 2017. .

Lizzy Watts’ theatre credits include Strife at Chichester Festival Theatre, The Angry Brigade and Artefacts at The Bush, A Midsummer Night’s Dream at The Globe, Blink for Nabokov and Wasted for Paines Plough. TV includes The Durrells and Midsommer Murders and plays Ivy Layton in BBC Radio 4’s Home Front.

 Hedda Gabler is at  Milton Keynes Theatre until Saturday 3rd March.

Box Office: 0844 871 7652 or online: atgtickets.com/miltonkeynes

Hedda Gabler herself is not a nice person. Having just got married for all the wrong reasons, she comes back from honeymoon and quickly feels trapped. She’s witty, cunning, vicious and vivacious. Sadly for her and those around her she vents her frustrations upon those people that if she were normal she might love – and love dearly

.Set and lighting design for Hedda Gabler is by Jan Versweyveld. The play is set in the newly-wed’s apartment. Large and so far sparsely furnished. Hedda herself mentions that the room is all wrong and its hard to breathe. It was so huge that I would have thought breathing was one of the few things you could do in comfort, this room reminded me of the Amazon building. Just a very large  white square panelled box with a French windows onto an imaginary balcony. There were no doors, so the cast (frequently) entered and left via the audience – a move that I thought was distracting and almost reminiscent of pantomime.

The highly experienced and more than capable cast all gave fine performances – even whilst galloping backwards and forwards up and down the aisles and steps from the auditorium onto the stage!

As you might expect, there was a fair amount of precious arty nonsense being trotted out in the foyer, one person was heard to sum up those comments with “Isn’t it wonderful! I love it when a play really makes you think……………….I had to ask my friend with me to explain it all to me!” Yes I’m afraid there is an amount of The Emperor’s New Clothes about Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler – we’ve all been told just how wonderful it is for so many years………

Ernie Almond.

Hedda Gabler is at  Milton Keynes Theatre until Saturday 3rd March.

Box Office: 0844 871 7652 or online: atgtickets.com/miltonkeynes

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