Theatre: On The Waterfront



If there was too much sex on stage at the opera on Tuesday, there didn't seem enough of it on Wednesday in this engaging stage adaptation of On The Waterfront at the Theatre Royal Haymarket. There is a lot of excitement and dramatic tension in this tight production directed by Steven Berkoff... Assuming you overlook some unintentionally hilarious moments such as when the actors play pigeons (the effect is funnier than the scenes of singing birds in The Producers).

But with all that tension and bitterness, I thought perhaps a bit of roughing up of the actors could have helped. Well at least in the climatic fight scene, it would have been nice to see Simon Merells (who plays the Brando character), have some of his clothes ripped off... Alas it wasn't meant to be.

Still there is enough violence implied in this shadowy story of corruption and mob violence on the New Jersey docks in the 1950s. Berkhoff sees the story as relevant for any age. Whatever the case is, it is a great story well acted and presented.

My only question would be (assuming I wasn't going to ask about the pigeons), why was a silhouette of Abu Hamza at the back? The show runs until April and worth a look...

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