Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Saturday Night and Sunday Morning.

Arthur. Attractive name?

I prefer it to Chad. It has more grit and less bleach.

Despite being severely under the weather I forced myself to the Royal Exchange to view 'Saturday Night and Sunday Morning'. When I say forced, I mean I was chauffeured there, back and was treated to ice-cream at the interval.

Sat on the banquettes, staring at the simple set, I had relatively no idea what was in store, bar being informed that I might see nudity and it was an adaptation of a 1960 film. Ignorant, I know.

From the moment that ducktail was revealed, I was enthralled.

It's a timeless subject: male tweenager sees himself as a big fish in a boring, non eventful pond. Controversially playing with the (attractive) mice whilst the cat's away and sowing his wild oats in any field open to him.

Arthur was said said subject last night; ale swilling, sharply dressing cock of the walk.

Aside from technology, the scene captured from Nottingham in the 50s is as relevant as a scene of today in any city. Congruent even. His dissatisfaction and resentment at life is tangible. His nonchalant swagger yet passionate opinionated bursts stand juxtaposed, enveloped in a confused, youthful exterior.

Faced with unwanted pregnancy, a loveless job and socio-political pressures Perry Fitzpatrick held down the characters' several identities remarkably. Coupled with an unnervingly gripping cast which included: Chanel Cresswell (This is England), Clare Calbraith (Heartbeat), David Crellin (Coronation Street), Jo Hartley (This is England), Graeme Hawley (Coronation Street), Ryan Pope plus some seriously talented individuals.

Hats off to the set designer Anna Fleischle and the directors in all guises.

Apt title: whilst we were watching him on a night out, becoming more and more inebriated, disillusioned and muddling through the one man party; not caring who he offended, spilt drinks on or hurt we patiently waited until came the morning. The hangover. The misery and pain: reality. Were we applauding the comeuppance? Or rooting for the anti-hero?

Shortly after leaving I tweeted:

"Saturday Night, Sunday Morning at was better than a Beechams for my cold. The leading guy can rub Vicks on my chest anytime ..."

I was a tad too flippant perhaps. It blew me away and it's on til the April 7.

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