I wish this play was running last term! It fit perfectly with the discussion I had going in my essay, but never mind- that’s just the way the cookie crumbles.
Looking around me at 2pm on a Wednesday matenèe at the National Theatre most of the faces I can see are over 60 and white. I’ll leave you to draw what you want from that.
Yaël Farber is known for shaking up classics, and her retelling of Salomé is no different- rape, nudity and no satisfactory ending leaves the audience feeling uncomfortable in their own skin, being the person I am, I enjoy a play that challenges me- but I did feel a certain disconnect to the character- like an observer which only added to the lack of agency I was feeling, I felt like the play wasn’t relatable to my life and my world (despite some odd touches such as with guns in an otherwise accurate period piece) and the voice of Salomé, as she was dying, felt weak to me, despite having strong words which felt frustrating.
It was the programme, containing information about the history of the production and the reasoning behind those decisions that led to the final production being made that helped me make my mind up about how I felt about the play, that I found it a fascinating and deep play. However, I am aware that not everyone can afford £4 for a programme, and not everyone has or is doing a theatre degree. This leaves me toying with wanting nuanced and sophisticated plays, but also wanting those plays to be accessible to the average person on the street. Torn, just like the narrative about a woman we know little about.