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The Umbrella Organisation

The Umbrella Organisation

May the power of the brolly live on!

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The Recruiting Officer, Donmar Warehouse, starring Mark Gatiss
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rakspatel wrote in mycroft_brolly

Photo credit: http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/theatre/article-24030360-theatres-new-power-couple.do

Cut and pasted from the Guardian website:

Restoration comedy The Recruiting Officer by Irish playwright George Farquhar was the first play ever to be staged in Australia, by convicts of the First Fleet in 1789. It now notches up another first, being the inaugural production by the Donmar Warehouse's new artistic director, Josie Rourke. Combining strategies both military and sexual, it follows the exploits of the womanising Captain Plume as he scours Shrewsbury for army recruits, and attempts to bed heiress Sylvia; and of cowardly Captain Brazen as he too is toyed with by a scheming minx. Rourke's cast includes Mark Gatiss, Rachael Stirling and Mackenzie Crook.

Previews started today and run until Monday 13 February; Press Night is on Tuesday 14 February.
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(I said in my PM that I was heading to bed -- 1.49am, I made a late night to write, will pay it tomorrow... uh... later)

I'm actually VERY happy to read what you think about "Frankenstein", because you know what? I agree 100%. You expressed all my confused and blurred feeling of "there is something rotten in this play" with the precision I was lacking.

I like the idea behind the play: the creature being the topic. But... it wasn't done the right way, it was simply too plain and lacked all the philosophical aspects you mentioned above. Because as you mentioned, there is some good thinking to be done about "Frankenstein" (let's not forget it was written by a woman at a time when women writer were not that popular, let alone on the gothic litterature scene).

For the rest, as I said, I echo what you wrote, because it is all true. Really.
I'll only mention the train once more, just to clarify. I'm a railwayac, love trains to the bone, so seeing a train on stage was just a little girl's amazement. BUT the first time I saw the play, I wondered what the train was doing there. The second time, I considered that it was only a way to show that some important industrial discoveries were made in the 19th Century (railways and at the same time, people had an easier access to education and became more literate (in the sense: reading + writing). But again, this was a fail. Because "Frankenstein" was published in 1818 and at that time, railways were merely an idea (first line opened in 1825 in the UK), so I feel betrayed by the play again as I wrote those lines...

And finally, regarding my English... well, reading and watching plays (along with TV shows without subtitles did help a lot). Also, the fact that I consider that I shouldn't expect people to speak my language when I visit a different country, but should show some respect and speak the nation's language, might also be another reason why I try to improve myself! ^^
(but don't ask me about grammar, I missed all the basics in English, ooch...)
But thanks anyway, I feel like you saying you find it nice to get feedback about your writing ^^

(and now, now I go to bed. Really. Will read your other links tomorrow! And thanks for sharing the news on the writing front. And my happy congratulations stay!!)

Watch this and you will see the difference:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mary-Shelleys-Frankenstein-Robert-Niro/dp/B00004CWWL/ref=sr_1_1?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1329011650&sr=1-1

This film, although panned by the critics, is an excellent and intelligent adaptation of the book. It tells the story of both the Creator and the Creation, and you feel sympathy and empathy for both characters. Victor is given centre stage and it explores all the science and the morality of the piece.

It tells Victor's backstory, from childhood onwards, so you understand his motivations and what drives him, and why he is the person that he is. Again, Nick Dear's play, by starting at the point that the Creature is born, skips the whole of the Victor backstory and is poorer for doing so.

From a gender perspective, Elizabeth (played by Helena Bonham-Carter) is a strong, independent, gutsy heroine, who loves her man, and does everything to try and understand him, reach him, and help him. She is not a passive sponge, she makes things happen and drives the action. Nick Dear's Elizabeth was nothing; pathetic by comparison. She had no independence, no character, no fire, no passion. No wonder Victor felt nothing for her!

Edited at 2012-02-12 02:03 am (UTC)

I am glad you agree re Frankenstein - its nice to know that at least one person agrees!

It is really interesting what you said re the train. You have better knowledge than me. I assumed railways and trains WERE around at the time; now you tell me that they weren't! Which really begs the question why include it in the first place, except as a big set-piece stunt? But yes, like you, I assumed that what they were trying to show, regardless of whether trains were around in reality or not, was the Industrial Revolution, the coming of machines, the destruction of the countryside, the emergence of cities, the breakdown of communities etc.

Re your English - it is excellent. And yes, I too agree with you that I shouldn't expect people to speak my language when I visit a different country, but should show some respect and speak the nation's language. However, I am just rubbish at languages! I have travelled extensively in the Middle East, and every time I go there I try to improve my Arabic, but I always have to start from square one again. I have been countless times, and yet all I can say is hello, goodbye, praise be to God!, and count from one to ten! I also know the words for water and a few key food items but that is it!

Finally, I too am now going to bed, but thank you for your congratulations!

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