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December 2004
A Cloud in Trousers @ The Burton Taylor
Burton Taylor
Where the action happened.
Steve Trafford's A Cloud In Trousers was a feast for your ears, according to reviewer Rosie Hetherington.

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Don’t be put off by the Russian revolution it’s not just politics and poetry.

The heart of the play is passion, be it for a cause or for love.

John Sackville gives a mesmerising performance as the futurist poet Vladimir Mayakovsky.

He drives the play with the force of his passionate verse. A man ahead of his times, censored and controlled by those around him as well as by the State.

Elizabeth Mansfield as Lili Brik conveys the spirit of Mother Russia with equal passion.

She is the centre of this love triangle a freethinking, free-loving modern woman putting ideals above babies.

Balancing love and duty, lover and husband, ever sacrificing for the good of others.

Mark Payton as Osip Brik plays the husband masterfully with a strength that gradually slips away as he compromises himself until there is nothing left.

Gilly Tompkins as Annushka plays the old maidservant with a delightful cockney humour that lightens every scene.

Her wisdom and verse concerned with more practical matters as in “Do you want mouse shit in our soup? That’s the question!”

Steve Trafford has pulled off that rare feat a new play about something.

The title is taken from one of Mayakovsky’s poems. The script moves seamlessly from dialogue to verse and back.

The only clue being the titles projected on
the wall.

The set conveys a sense of Russia with its blood red walls and book-burning stove.

The ladders, which they often climb, add height to their passions as the bare light bulbs throw light into their souls.

*A Cloud In Trousers' run at the Burton Taylor Theatre has finished.

*The views expressed in these comments are those of the contributor's and not the BBC.

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