On Thursday 21st July - as a kind of forerunner to our activity-filled family week off in London - Maisie and I went to see the matinee performance of The Woman In Black at the Fortune Theatre. It was pretty good.
It's one of those plays it's always possible to get cheap seats for, for groups, and I guess has run for so long because it's very cheap to put on, having such a small cast and little in the way of scene changes. It's a small theatre, and was about half-full I'd say, including at least one group of students, the girls among whom were good value when it came to shrieking at the scary bits. It was better done than I remembered - I (not sure with or without Bethan) had seen it many years ago, in the early London years. In particular I didn't remember it as being particularly scary, but it felt more so this time, perhaps because of others in the audience in general and perhaps because of the presence of Maisie in particular. She enjoyed it too, and did acknowledge that it was a little scary, but she didn't go too far. (In fact, as I write she's reading a copy of the book from the school library.)
I don't know how long the two actors - Malcolm James and Matt Connor - have been doing it, but they were pretty good. I'm not sure I've seen either of them in anything before. I'm never sure if taking roles in these long-running plays indicate ambition or lack of ambition, ascendancy, descendancy or the contented rolling on of a jobbing actor.
Ah, here's an Official London Theatre article from March, when they started. 'James will reprise his role as solicitor Arthur Kipps following his recent starring performance on the national tour of the show. Connor will make his West End debut alongside James following a string of regional credits and appearances in television shows including Coronation Street and Hollyoaks.'