Monday, 23 May 2011

flare path

flare path
After my Isle of Wight post referencing Sienna Miller at Steephill Cove, the least we could do was return the favour and visit her in her current West-End show at the Haymarket.
It's Terence Rattigan's wartime story of a Bomber Command airbase in Lincolnshire and the to-ings and fro-ings based in the adjacent hotel. Rattigan himself was a tail-gunner on bombers, so there's some direct realism to parts of the plotline as well as the central story of the actress played by Sienna.
The main plot is a love triangle handled with 1940's embarrassed manners and massive use of understatement, except for moments when the stress of bottled up emotions are allowed to run riot.
We get a spectrum of English class portrayed within the confines of the hotel suite with riotous off-stage bawdiness in the adjacent lounge bar.
The story's backdrop revolves around the air-crew spending time in the hotel between missions. To the front is the playing out of the scenes between Sienna, her movie-star lover and her bomber pilot husband from a whirlwind wartime romance.
Throw in a perilous overnight mission and there's a full and engaging story for the characters.
A very enjoyable production, a warm-hearted ending and some insights into a very different world of some 70 years ago.

4 comments:

Accidental Londoner said...

I've been wondering about going to see this, so thanks for the review...shall have to book some tickets!

Pat said...

I'm not familiar with this play but IMO Rattigan is one of the best play wright. Separate Tables and Deep blue Sea are two of my favourites.

rashbre said...

Pat: I think Rattigan used it as the basis for the screenplay to 'Way to the Stars' which was a B+W 50's film about Bomber Command and the Americans in Lincolnshire (Michael Redgrave/John Mills/Rosamund John) - rather different storyline but with elements of the same plots.

rashbre said...

Accidental Londoner : I noticed that the Haymarket run ends on 11 June. There might be some bargain tix around at the moment.