Question of the week: when did you last go to the theatre and what did you see?

You may have noticed this is largely a television blog. Occasionally, I’ll do movies, books, DVDs, audio plays, etc, but largely TV. But occasionally, very occasionally, I’ll do theatre reviews. So in a mix of customer survey and curiosity, I’ll pose this week’s question of the week:

When did you last go to the theatre and what did you see? And if it’s been a while (or never) why haven’t you been and what would draw you to the theatre?

As always, leave a comment with your answer or a link to your answer on your own blog




  • I would go to the theatre far more often then I do, but time & money hold me back. We have seen in the last few years Oliver!, Mary Poppins & Sound of Music – but all of them are pricey family days out.
    Last thing I went to see was eldest 2 sprogs in Our House – local youth theatre they’re in but quite high standard.
    But while I enjoy musicals, my preference is for drama. So my last few forays into theatre land have been to see the Bard: Romeo & Juliet at the Globe en famille summer before last was a highlight, as was Hamlet (sadly sans DT, but wonderful nonetheless), but best of all was Love’s Labour’s Lost with the wonderful Mr T at Stratford. A magical magical performance.
    Needless to say thanks to a heads up from two of our friends, Ms Phillips & Ms Rullsenberg I have booked to see Mr & Ms T in Much Ado. Can’t wait.
    Would love to see more of it. Now children are older, I do have excuse to take them for their education(-:
    Reason I love live theatre is that it is a completely different experience to watching tv/film. Because you are so close to the actors, and you are always so aware of the artifice involved, the intimacy between audience and cast is greater, and I love that. Feels very like reading to me, as I get pulled into the dramatic world in the same way. In fact, I am an actress manquee, can’t you tell?

  • Marie

    I go to the theatre a lot. The last thing I saw was an adaptation of Diary of a Nobody in December but that had friends of mine in it so doesn’t entirely count, before that it was a surprisingly long time – Henry IV pt 1 at the Globe in August. This year I’ve already booked for The Blue Dragon (directed by Robert Lapage, at the Barbican), something else the title of which I’ve forgotten at the Barbican but it’s directed by Romeo Castelucci who I love, Frankenstein at the National Theatre and the Tennant and Tate Much Ado, for obvious reasons. I’m surprised people don’t go to the theatre more, if you choose carefully and sit in the cheap seats it can be a bargain. I think the Barbican shows go down to about £15. My feeling about the theatre is that it can be SO much worse than anything when it’s bad, because you’re so embarrassed for the people on stage, but when it’s good, the immediacy of it beats anything the cinema can offer.

  • PS Also should point out that though my choices are all Shakespearian, I do love other theatre too. Thanks to Marie, I went to see Future Me a couple of years back, which was bold theatre, often very uncomfortable, & challenging but held me spellbound for the duration. Just as good theatre should.
    I agree with Marie that when it’s good it’s very very good, and when it’s bad it’s cringeworthy.
    Play I always wish I’d seen was Shirley Valentine – original production at the Everyman in Liverpool c 1984. Too busy being a student & kept forgetting to go. Could have seen Willy Russell in the lead role for £1. AAGHH!!!
    Marie is also right, it is cheap if you look around. Not quite near enough to London/flexible enough with my time to do that just yet, but looking forward to when I can, because every time I go to the theatre I think I should do this more often.

  • Templarj

    The last time I went was to see Val Kilmer in The Postman Always Rings Twice. How we laughed, the whole audience and I. Since the Terrible Maebh was born, the trips to places other adults congregate have stopped sadly. The last film I saw at the cinema was Pirates of the Caribeaan 2, so it’s not just the high culture that took a hit.
    Still, I get to see Octonaughts eight times a day, and that has to be better than two hours of shouting in the evening, as Mr Troughton apparantly said.

  • Mark Carroll

    I don’t actually remember what I last saw at the theatre. Having children has really slowed us down in that regard, with things where we’d prefer to go together but sans kids. Hence all the Netflix instead; even if not kid-suitable, if they’re in bed we can still watch without leaving them too unattended. There isn’t much that we’d all like to see.

  • PolyG

    Last friday I saw King Lear at the Donmar, and I see The Ideal Husband this friday, and I usually clock 80-100 plays a year. I say that with both pride and shame. What’s going to become of me? It’s a sickness I tell you.

  • Virpi

    If the National Theatre cinema broadcasts count, my last play was Fela! two weeks ago. In “real” theatre, it was a local production of Chicago just after New Year.
    Some collegues are setting up an excursion to see Entertaining Mr. Sloane, translated by a former teacher of ours, and like so many others frequenting this site, I already have tickets booked for Much Ado.
    In the NT live programme, I’m really looking forward to King Lear next week and can hardly wait for Frankenstein: I’m hoping to activate even my computer-bound offspring for that one. Thanks to TMINE, we know about and love Benedict Cumberbatch despite our national television companies having once again failed us sot that Sherlock hasn’t been aired here. Praise DVDs!

  • SK

    The last couple of plays I saw weren’t actually in theatres: a very avant-garde production of King Lear in Wandlebury Country Park that was less a performance of the play than a series of riffs around scenes in it, and a slightly more straight (but still interesting — two actors and a lot of broken dolls playing all the parts) Macbeth in a 12th-century Leper chapel.
    Oh, and there were a few new writing festivals, but they were all rehearsed readings in the theatre bar — do they count?
    And I was annoyed to miss the King Lear broadcast from the National, but tickets went like lightning.
    It’s actually been far too long since I saw just a straight play in a proper theatre (2009, I think, when I saw Sylvester McCoy in Little Shop of Horrors and Patrick Stewart/Ian McKellan/Simon Callow in a surprisingly non-sci-fi themed Waiting For Godot). I keep meaning to go more, but being outside the metropolis makes finding out what’s on a little harder: the big London productions get media coverage, but I have to remember to check the local theatres’ programmes for what’s coming up, and I (shamefully) tend to get distracted by the more pervasive advertising of films.
    Oh, and this Easter I’ll be on the other side of the curtain, as Elrond in The Hobbit at the ADC Theatre.
    S.

  • I couldn’t possibly compete with the ADMIRABLE PolyG who clocks up plays like most people clock up hours of TV. But I do love theatre and try to go regularly. It looks set to be a busy year theatre wise (hmm, can’t think why) but even aside of obvious draws, I’m aided by a friend who works in a local theatre and keeps us abreast of what’s coming up. I too have took advantage of the NT live productions and also have the King Lear and Frankenstein on my radar. In fact, I think I have around 2 plays per month every month til the summer.