fri 07/08/2020

A Delicate Balance, Almeida Theatre | reviews, news & interviews

A Delicate Balance, Almeida Theatre

A Delicate Balance, Almeida Theatre

Albee's long night's journey into day thrills anew with a dream cast

An alcohol-fuelled Imelda Staunton lets rip as niece Lucy Cohu looks onHugo Glendinning

Serenity hangs by a fraying thread in the thrilling Almeida Theatre revival of A Delicate Balance, Edward Albee's 1966 Pulitzer Prize-winner about remembrance, fear, and somehow facing a new day. This particular playhouse has long been associated with Albee, from its (overrated) Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? through to various UK and even world premieres. But James Macdonald's production of the play that follows Virginia Woolf in the Albee canon stands a league apart, perhaps in sympathy with the work itself. The audience last night laughed plenty, sometimes (if truth be told) strangely, and yet by the end gave way to the voluble stillness that bespeaks a playgoing public stunned into silence.

By play's end the putative madwoman that is Penelope Wilton's Agnes seems the most composed, resilient person on the book-lined stage

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