On Saturday, I went to a play of Pride and Prejudice at the Richmond Theatre. Don’t know too much about the actors, though I only recognised the name Susan Hampshire from way back when my sister used to go on about her in some BBC television series years ago.
I was highly disappointed with the play, so much so that we left at interval. Admittedly, the play would never have done justice both to the novel and to the BBC adaptation. Nevertheless, I was interested to see how they would condense it. Darcy was nice and amiable enough. But Elizabeth was just abrasive. I think it’s a fine line between having a prejudice and being completely abrasive. I’m not sure about this particular actress’ style, but shouting on stage, and generally being aggressive made Elizabeth seem like a brash marketplace seller, rather than the educated witty woman that she is in the novel. I definitely think she overacted her prejudice, which then came across as aggressive. Or, maybe having a prejudice and being aggressive is a very fine line. Unfortunately, the actress could not tell the difference, and clearly neither could the director, if this wasn’t picked up on early enough in rehearsals. Fortunately for Elizabeth, Darcy like her against his will. Unfortunately, I did not like her at all.