I’ve only recently started to dive into London and get the full experience of living here. You know, while I am here I might as well.
As a part of that I started reading TimeOut and since I happened to book a ticket to a Neil Gaiman event recently, I am also receiving email offers for reduced tickets or bookings of sometimes a random nature like food tastings, walking tours or haircuts.
I had read about The Pride. I’ve read an interview with lead actress Hayley Atwell, who happens to be rather easy on the eye. I remembered her role on Captain America.
The posters for the play on the tube recite rave reviews and it’s plastered with four and five star ratings.
When I happened to receive a TimeOut offers email with reduced tickets for The Pride, I texted my good friend Paul and asked him if he wanted to go. Sure enough I ended up booking two tickets and yesterday we went to see it.
I only very roughly knew what it was about. Now I find it difficult to summarize the plot. The play is set simultaneously in 1958 and the present. And it’s about two men in love now and then and how homosexuality was lived now and then.
It’s witty, wordy, fast, unexpected and broken by heavy silences, quite funny at times and certainly thought provoking.
All actors were stunning, the performances brilliant. The set is incredibly minimalistic, downright stark, the play entirely carried by the cast and a minimum of effects.
I found myself leaning forward, even though we sat in the second row at the front. I found myself listening intently, watching the characters, their body language and mimics.
The change of scenes from now to then and back to now was very well done, simplistic but effective.
My heart broke for each of the three main characters at least once, and by the end I smiled with tears in my eyes and hope in my heart.
I want to go and see it again.
And this I read about in the magazine as well: at the end, when it’s time to take a bow and receive the very well deserved applause, the cast comes out and carries signs that read “To Russia with Love”.
It was then that the many gay men in the audience got up, whistled and applauded a storm. I filled up with something I can only describe as joy. Where it came from, I do not know, but it was there and I was glad to have come and seen the play, the brilliant performances and a shout out to the gay and lesbian men and women of Russia, who live under an oppressive government that seeks to restrict their lives with more and more appalling laws.
The Pride should be mandatory viewing. Whilst the show only runs until November, I hope it gets a lot of stage time in the future in more cities around the world. Maybe one day even in Russia.
The cast should be proud of their work. They have plenty of reason to.
Whatever I write here about the play seems inadequate. I certainly can’t do it justice. Do yourself a favour and see it, if you happen to be in London.