If you’re looking to enjoy some classic theatre this month, a little bird tells me that the new production of Harold Pinter’s classic play The Caretaker is worth catching in its run at London’s Trafalgar Studios.
Like many modern classics, The Caretaker may have been analysed to death by academics over the years, and be a staple of many dry University literature and drama courses, but don’t let that put you off! With a thought-provoking plot and a stellar cast headed by the great Jonathan Pryce in the title role, The Caretaker offers everything you could ask from a theatre break in London, and sounds like the perfect way to spend an afternoon or evening.
I’ve been a fan of Jonathan Pryce since I first watched Terry Gilliam’s bizarre film Brazil, and this is the perfect chance to catch him at his self-proclaimed best: treading the boards of London‘s theatres in front of a captivated audience. It’s no surprise that reviewers have been full of praise for his performance, with Peter Brown of the London Theatre Guide calling him “a fox-like Davies who thinks he’s cunning and sly, but is not sufficiently so to recognise which brother it is best to side with.”
The brothers in question are the owners of a house who invite the homeless old man (played by Pryce) to be their caretaker. Aston, played by Peter McDonald, is a withdrawn and trusting victim who you can’t help but feel sorry for, while Sam Spruell plays his brother Mick in what sounds like a very unnerving depiction of the house owner.
I can’t really give more details without giving it away, but rest assured this isn’t just a play for the literary elite either, though I’m sure the high brow audiences will enjoy it just as much as the casual theatregoer. The Caretaker is one of those shows that can be as deep or meaningful as you want it to be – bear in mind that its creator Harold Pinter had this to say about his masterpiece: “It’s about two brothers and a caretaker.”
You can catch The Caretaker any evening from Monday to Saturday at 7.30pm, or on afternoon matinees on Thursdays and Saturdays from 2.30pm, and the show will run at Trafalgar Studios 1 near to Leicester Square and the West End until 17th April. If you head down, let me know what you thought!