I went to the Moor Theatre Delicatessen earlier this week to see Day One’s debut production, Patrick Marber’s After Miss Julie. A full review should be up over on Exeunt very soon, but here’s a few brief thoughts:
I saw Strindberg’s Miss Julie in Manchester a few years ago, with Maxine Peake in the title role. That was fantastic, as with most things that Peake’s involved with, so I was intrigued to see that Patrick Marber (whose career I’ve followed since he was a comedian on The Day Today) had written a version of the play set in 1940’s London.
Day One have set their production deep in the basement of the theatre which was a good move – it was freezing cold (the audience all kept their coats on) but added to the icy atmosphere which was being generated on stage. The story is basically the same as Miss Julie but given a whole new twist by its relocation – in its simplest terms, it’s a love triangle between the 3 main characters, but it goes deeper to become a study of class warfare, gender politics and misogyny.
As ever with Marber, the dialogue is biting and intense and the trio of actors deliver it brilliantly. It’s not without its shocking moments, but with a running time of just 1 hour 20 minutes, it runs at a cracking pace. It’s always good to see a new theatre company set up in Sheffield, and hopefully we’ll see a lot more productions of this sort of quality in the years to come.
Also, a word of praise for Moor Theatre Deli, who are producing some of the most exciting shows in the region at the moment. From the lovely, laid-back Beam to the epic, immersive production of The Great Gatsby (one of my favourite shows of last year), they’re quickly establishing themselves as one of the cultural touchstones in South Yorkshire.
Update: the full review of After Miss Julie is now live on Exeunt. Read the review here