Until March 2nd

When Fallen Angels was first produced in London 1925 it was described as “ vulgar, disgusting, outrageous..” with the central characters referred to as “suburban sluts” it generated huge box office interest and enjoyed a successful run. The challenge for the theatre reviewer of the time was that they had to watch two ladies getting drunk at the prospect of meeting an old flame whilst their husbands are off for the weekend playing golf.

Jenny Seagrove (Julia Sterroll) drifts around the huge apartment, smoking, caustic and out of love for husband in the long marriage. Sara Crowe (Jane Banbury) creates a wonderful character, delivering without question some of the best lines with dizzy, shyness which becomes far more entertaining with each glass consumed.

The style of Coward is captured well in the dialogue whilst Act 2 becomes too slapstick for the era with repeatedly choreographed falls, slips and slides accompanying their anxious drinking. The detailed direction with food, telephone cables and shoes is executed beautifully.

Gillian McCafferty as the maid Saunders is excellent, interrupting conversations and marching around the flat with military precision.
The staging is opulent with a high ceiling airy apartment from Paul Farnsworth, costumes and detail are well observed and the play romps along at a good pace with a great deal of fizz. It is hugely entertaining and without question the central characters get the chance to have enormous fun which transcends the footlights with ease.

****

Petra Schofield