Booking a play because there is a famous person in it is not always a recipe for success. But when that famous person is the legend that is Helen Mirren you can’t really go wrong.
The Audience sees Dame Helen once again playing Queen Elizabeth, but this time the focus is on the relationship she had and has with all twelve Prime Ministers throughout her reign. Every week the Queen meets with the PM, officially it is to keep her informed about current events but one can only assume that she gives a certain amount of moral support as well.
This is a play done right. The pace was perfect, and managed to keep the momentum as it jumped from Her Majesty as a child to interviewing PM’s. A lot of this came from the on-stage costume changes for Miss Mirren who managed to carry parliamentary eras on her shoulders. The Audience was witty, simple and entertaining – a combination that does not often come about.
The play was always going to be a bit of a stretch for a foreigner – I know the most recent men in suits and of course Thatcher, but anyone else is a mystery. Luckily politicians tend to be caricatures of themselves anyway, and when you get talented actors involved the outcome is even more interesting/hilarious. I’m sure I missed some of the jokes, but I enjoyed the proceedings so much that I didn’t feel left out in the slightest (and they had one of the Queen’s butlers explaining all the tricky bits!).
My ticket was only £12 but to be honest with this play the slightly restricted view didn’t matter (view is the photo above). For the most part there were only a couple of people on stage talking, so there was no ‘action’ to miss. Call and try and get a ticket today, because you just can’t miss the majesty of Dame Helen.
I saw the play a few days before Thatchers death – I am really keen to know if they have changed the play at all since…