BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page was last updated in January 2005We've left it here for reference.More information

18 April 2014
Accessibility help
Text only
OxfordOxford

BBC Homepage
»BBC Local
Oxford
Things to do
People & Places
Nature
History
Religion & Ethics
Arts and Culture
BBC Introducing
TV & Radio

Sites near Oxford

Beds Herts Bucks
Berkshire
Coventry
Gloucestershire
Northampton
Wiltshire

Related BBC Sites

England
 

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!

 

January 2005
Enter A Free Man at the Keble O’Reilly Theatre
Stage Image
Stage Image

Enter A Free Man
Keble O'Reilly Theatre

Tuesday 25th – Saturday 29th January 2005

SEE ALSO
More stage

WEB LINKS
Keble O'Reilly Theatre
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external websites.

PRINT THIS PAGE

View a printable version of this page.

get in contact

By Harriet Mancey-Barratt

George Riley is a failed inventor who can’t see that his professional life is a sham. His family, however, can; and he is a character at once comic and desperate as a result. As the cast of ‘Enter a Free Man’ warmed up, gaining emotional momentum and dramatic coherence as a group, this disparity was brought out well.

This was mainly thanks to the often excellent supporting cast. Poppy Burton-Morgan was especially good as George’s long-suffering but stiflingly anally retentive wife, Persephone. [George: Her name’s Constance…but I never knew anyone called Persephone. Comic sidekick, Able: Doesn’t she mind? George: She never knew…] George and his family all deceive themselves in one way or another, trying to ignore the oppressive repetition that fills their days.

The set played up the feeling of 60s malaise in a well-observed manner, complete with beige/dun wallpaper and tacky ornaments. Yet George himself was underplayed, with too much emphasis on the comic side and not enough attention paid to the misery inherent in his character’s make-up.

This early Tom Stoppard play was always going to be a hard one to pull off. The cast did well as a whole, and, with a little more time to relax into the run, the well-timed jokes will be delivered with even more success. Yet if the lead, Andrew Hollingbury, had had slightly more emotional colouring, this could have been an excellent production. It was entertaining and increasingly credible as a piece of theatre; ultimately, though, it lacked the vital combination of a light dramatic touch with involved emotional delivery.

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

line
Top | Stage Index | Home
Reviews Archive Stage
Stage review archive

Oxford venue guide

Listings page


The Weather Click for flicks Harry Potter fan site Contact Us
Write:
BBC Oxford,
269 Banbury Road,
Oxford,
OX2 7DW
E-mail:
oxford@bbc.co.uk
Phone:
08459 311 111



About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy