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Mountain Language / Ashes to Ashes


June 2001

This double bill has received good notices from the popular press... BENEDICT NIGHTINGALE for THE TIMES says, "Fine revival of Harold Pinter's 1988 play Mountain Language." He says of Ashes to Ashes, "Pinter has succeeded in his task: he's reminded us of public horrors while respecting the dark corners of a very private person." CHARLES SPENCER for THE DAILY TELEGRAPH says, "There are some who claim that Pinter's explicitly political plays are just as fine as his richer and more enigmatic earlier work, but it is hard to see how anyone, apart from his most slavishly devoted fans, can seriously take this point of view." MICHAEL BILLINGTON for THE GUARDIAN says, "Dogs howl. Bells clang. Helicopter blades whirr. Katie Mitchell's production of Mountain Language ... opens with an aural assault clangorously conjured up by Gareth Fry. Although it's good to see the play again, I'm not sure Mitchell's approach sends out the right signals: it smacks of police-state cliche." He goes on to say, "Ashes to Ashes, a richly disturbing play first staged in 1996, fares much better in Mitchell's assured hands. " PAUL TAYLOR for THE INDEPENDENT says, "In Kate Mitchell's taut and intense production, these two plays by Harold Pinter make perfect sense as a double bill." He goes on to say, "Too much of Ashes to Ashes feels artificial and engineered. For me, the much simpler Mountain Language makes the stronger impact." RACHEL HALLIBURTON for THE EVENING STANDARD says, "Mitchell's beautifully controlled aesthetic and imaginative use of sound reveals two plays where the language games and the scalpel-sharp dissection of human relationships carry an intriguing universality." ROBERT HEWISON for THE SUNDAY TIMES says, "In 60 minutes, Pinter at his best, and worst."

(Production photos provided by EPO)

Links to full reviews from newspapers...

The Independent
The Times
Daily Telegraph
The Guardian
The Sunday Times

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