Opened 27 Jan 2009
Written: by Samuel Adamson, from Ibsen’s Little Eyolf
Directed: Marianne Elliott
Cast: Claire Skinner, Naomi Frederick, Angus Wright
Produced by: National Theatre
Synopsis: After six lonely weeks with nobody but her crippled little boy for company, Rita Affleck, wealthy, beautiful and consumed by jealous love, welcomes home her husband Alfred. But, far from the passionate reunion she so craves, there is only torment as Alfred's possessive half-sister arrives, and he announces his great revelation.
What the popular press had to say.....
NICHOLAS DE JONGH for THE EVENING STANDARD says, "It is an outstanding example of the vanity of the interfering playwright who imagines he can cast fresh light upon a classic original by reconstituting it." MICHAEL BILLINGTON for THE GUARDIAN says, "I see little point in doing what Samuel Adamson has done here: uproot Ibsen's 1890s symbolist drama, Little Eyolf, and set it down on the Kentish coast in 1955. The result is a misbegotten theatrical anachronism." MICHAEL COVENEY for THE INDEPENDENT says, "Laden with fine writing, a keen dramatic intelligence and good acting, the show still never catches fire." BENEDICT NIGHTINGALE for THE TIMES says, " Is her [Claire Skinner] riveting portrait of a trapped woman enough to justify Marianne Elliott’s strong, tense production? Of that I’m not so sure." DAVID BENEDICT for VARIETY says, "Despite Adamson's breadth of compassion, the actors' energies cannot stop "Mrs. Affleck" from feeling besieged, largely because both the old and new texts have too few events to keep their ideas moving forward. Less adherence to Ibsen's plotting might have allowed Adamson's new interpretation to take wing." CHARLES SPENCER for THE DAILY TELEGRAPH says, "Short of sitting in the dark at home and slowly pulling out your fingernails with a pair of pliers, I find it hard to imagine a more miserable way of spending an evening than this."
Production Photo by Kevin Cummins