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Previewed 8 August 2013, Opened 13 August 2013, Closed 9 November 2013 at the Trafalgar Studios in London
The West End premiere of Alexi Kaye Campbell's play Pride in London starring Hayley Atwell, Harry Hadden-Paton, Al Weaver and Mathew Horne and directed by Jamie Lloyd.
What is the point of this stupid, painful life if not to be honest? If not to stand up for what you are in the core of your being? Philip, Oliver and Sylvia exist in a complex love triangle, which spans over half a century, living and loving simultaneously in 1958 and the present against a background of changing attitudes towards homosexuality. Past and present worlds grind together and melt apart, yet the future and its promise of sexual liberation remains ever elusive, as societal repression gives way to self-deception. A hilarious and heart-felt play about courage, compassion and the fear of loneliness in life's journey towards self-discovery.
The cast for Pride in London features Hayley Atwell as 'Sylvia', Harry Hadden-Paton as 'Philip', Al Weaver as 'Oliver' and Mathew Horne. It is directed by Jamie Lloyd with designs by Soutra Gilmour. PLEASE NOTE: This play contains scenes of a sexual nature and has an age guidance of 16 years plus.
"Juxtaposing attitudes towards same-sex relationships in the repressive Fifties and today it's a sensitive, intelligent, sometimes painful and occasionally funny piece which demonstrates how far British attitudes have thankfully come in just five decades. Not that it's wholly optimistic about the present, however, suggesting some new problems have replaced the old. In a clever structural parallel, scenes alternate between 1958 and 2008 and involve three characters, Philip (Harry Hadden-Paton), Oliver (Al Weaver) and Sylvia (Hayley Atwell), showing how their lives might have played out had they been the same age in the two different time periods... Atwell performs both roles with impressive aplomb but watch out too, for Gavin & Stacey star Mathew Horne, who pops up in a series of cameos, from Nazi officer rent boy to a loud-mouth magazine editor. In each he's a treat." The Daily Express
"No reviewer in his right mind could deny that this is great theatre. Like all great theatre, it has a sure grasp of the human condition. Like all great theatre, too, it brings out the best in not just the actors up on the stage, but also the audiences... Sure, it is risqué stuff, but the characters fascinate because they are well drawn and played... When I say that the play shows how all of us are shaped by time, it makes it sound earnest, but it is actually enormously funny. I would not recommend it to anyone who is quick to take offence or who seeks only relaxation and a few laughs in the West End, but The Pride has a voice all of its own - one that is insightful, human and unnervingly direct." The Sunday Telegraph
"We are in 1958. Drinks are poured from a decanter in a respectable middle-class home. Philip, an estate agent, and his wife Sylvia are entertaining Oliver, a well travelled bachelor author whose new book she is illustrating. This cosy triangle becomes very awkward when it turns out that both chaps have one thing in common. They're both homosexual... In the modern age these poor people surely would have been happier by admitting their preferences and getting on with their lives, free from a culture of homophobia. Alexi Kaye Campbell's play examines that idea by repeatedly zipping forward to 2008 and seeing how these characters would fare in a liberated Britain... The contemporary scenes seem to be full of banal emoting and self-indulgence. Yet the play is a reminder that we should not be getting too nostalgic about Macmillan's Britain... The evening is most successful when set in the tweedy post-war past where appearances are kept up and the dramatic stakes are highest. Hayley Atwell gives us a wonderfully clipped portrait of a housewife marooned in a totally hollow marriage. It's in these scenes when this beautifully acted, powerful, if uneven play is at its best." The Mail on Sunday
Hayley Atwell's West End credits include the role of the daughter 'Catherine' in Lindsay Posner's revival of Arthur Miller's play A View From The Bridge (Duke of York's Theatre 2009). Harry Hadden-Paton London stage credits include the role of 'Flight Lieutenant Graham (Teddy)' in Trevor Nunn's revival of Terrace Rattigan's play Flare Path (Haymarket Theatre 2011) and the role of 'Jack/John Worthing' in Peter Gill's revival of Oscar Wilde's classic comedy The Importance Of Being Earnest (Vaudeville Theatre 2008). Al Weaver's London theatre credits include the title role in Trevor Nunn's Hamlet (Old Vic 2004, alternative 'Hamlet, two performances-a-week). Mathew Horne's West End acting credits include the title role in Nick Bagnall's revival of Joe Orton's comedy Entertaining Mr Sloane (Trafalgar Studios 2009). Jamie Lloyd revisits Alexi Kaye Campbell's play having directed it already at the 85 seat Royal Court Upstairs Theatre in 2008.
Pride in London at the Trafalgar Studio 1 previewed from 8 August 2013, opened on 13 August 2013 and closed on 9 November 2013.