Pride and Prejudice – adapted by Simon Reade
From the novel by Jane Austen
Theatre Royal Bath
This timeless classic is a glorious romantic comedy, staged on a simple revolve to allow seamless scene changes and reflect the ever changing seasons.
The tale of the five Bennet sisters and their quest for suitable husbands under the watchful gaze of their overbearing mother and henpecked father is a firm favourite for many adaptations. The central relationship between Elizabeth Bennet and the rather aloof Mr. Darcy grows into one of love and mutual respect despite the initial misjudgements.
The excellent cast bring great individuality to the sisters, Tafline Steen (Elizabeth Bennet) is gloriously strong willed and steadfast in her decisions. Benjamin Dilloway (Mr. Darcy) the apparent austere outsider who appears arrogant and indifferent allows the story and their relationship to unfold gradually and with great sincerity.
Felicity Montagu (Mrs. Bennet) and Matthew Kelly (Mr. Bennet) are both delightful in their comic timing and interactions. Mr. Bennet somewhat beleaguered by the women in the household but never uncaring.
This is a stylish production; from the movement direction (Sian Williams), the excellent design (Max Jones) alongside the fluid and dynamic direction (Deborah Bruce) the company ensure that this story remains relevant and hugely enjoyable. This is a gem of a show and well worth a ticket.
**** – 4 Stars