Play by Arthur Miller. Dockworker Eddie Carbone has made a good life for himself and his wife and niece in 1950s Brooklyn. As a former immigrant himself, Eddie is happy to house and protect his wife's Italian cousins who arrive illegally in pursuit of the 'American Dream'. What Eddie doesn't know is that this act of kindness will have a shattering effect on his whole life, and the lives of those he loves. This electrifying and deeply moving play is now acknowledged as one of the great classics of the twentieth century. Arthur Miller's other plays recently seen in London's West End include All My Sons, Broken Glass, The Crucible, Death of a Salesman, The Last Yankee, The Price and Resurrection Blues.
A View From The Bridge - Original London West End Production 1956
Opened 11 October 1956, Closed 20 April 1957 at the Comedy Theatre (now Harold Pinter Theatre)
The original cast featured Anthony Quayle as 'Eddie Carbone' and Megs Jenkins as 'Beatrice Carbone' with Mary Ure as 'Catherine', Brian Bedford as 'Rodolpho', Ian Bannen as 'Marco' and Michael Gwynne as 'Alfieri'. The cast also include Richard Harris as 'Louis'. Directed and designed by Peter Brook.
This was the first production to be presented by the New Watergate Theatre Club at the 800-seater Harold Pinter Theatre. Due to the content of the play this production was presented under private theatre club conditions rather than as a 'public performance' licensed by the Lord Chamberlain - this meant that, in order to buy tickets to see the play, the public had to buy a 'club membership'. The first new member to sign up at the new venue was Marilyn Monroe (Mrs Arthur Miller) - and the opening night of the play caused some commotion as Londoners flocked to the theatre to catch a glimpse of the Hollywood movie star.
This new venue was a marked improvement on the Club's previous premises, the 70-seater Watergate Theatre in the Strand, which was demolished to make way for a road widening scheme. When the move was announced, the Club said that: "Members of the club and their guests will be able to attend performances of outstanding plays, several having achieved noteworthy success on Broadway but for which no licence for public performance in this country has been granted." Interestingly this production played a Tuesday to Sunday evening and Saturday and Sunday matinee performance schedule - which was in contrast to the then current standard 'West End' schedule of Monday to Saturday evenings, with a midweek and Saturday matinee.
A View From The Bridge - London Revival 1984
Previewed 30 August 1984, Opened 4 September 1984, Closed 29 September 1984 at the Young Vic
The original cast featured Malcolm Tierney as 'Eddie Carbone' and Annie Ross as 'Beatrice Carbone' with Moira Brooker as 'Catherine', Vicenzo Ricotta as 'Rodolpho', Clive Russell as 'Marco' and David Hargreaves as 'Alfieri'. Directed by Roger Smith with designs by Shelagh Keegan.
A View From The Bridge - 1st West End Revival 1987
Previewed 6 February 1987, Opened 12 February 1987, Closed 28 September 1987 (in repertory) at the NT Cottesloe Theatre (now Dorfman Theatre)
Previewed 28 October 1987, Opened 3 November 1987, Closed 20 February 1988 at the Aldwych Theatre
A transfer from the National Theatre. The original West End (Aldwych Theatre) cast featured Michael Gambon as 'Eddie Carbone' and Elizabeth Bell as 'Beatrice Carbone' with Suzan Sylvester as 'Catherine', Adrian Rawlins as 'Rodolpho', Michael Simkins as 'Marco' and James Hayes as 'Alfieri' - who all reprised their roles from the National Theatre. Directed by Alan Ayckbourn with sets by Alan Tagg, costumes by Lindy Hemming and lighting by Mick Hughes.
A View From The Bridge - 2nd West End Revival 1995
Previewed 5 April 1995, Opened 7 April 1995, Closed 11 June 1995 at the Strand Theatre (now Novello Theatre)
A transfer from the Bristol Old Vic. The original cast featured Bernard Hill as 'Eddie Carbone' and Charlotte Cornwell as 'Beatrice Carbone' with Emer McCourt as 'Catherine', Joseph Fiennes as 'Rodolpho', Ivan Kaye as 'Marco' and Alan MacNaughton as 'Alfieri'. Directed by David Thacker with designs by Shelagh Keegan and music by Adrian Johnston.
A View From The Bridge - 3rd West End Revival 2009
Previewed 24 January 2009, Opened 5 February 2009, Closed 16 May 2009 at the Duke of York's Theatre
The original cast featured Ken Stott as 'Eddie Carbone' and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio as 'Beatrice Carbone' with Hayley Atwell as 'Catherine', Harry Lloyd as 'Rodolpho', Gerard Monaco as 'Marco' and Allan Corduner as 'Alfieri'. Directed by Lindsay Posner with designs by Christopher Oram, lighting by Peter Mumford and music and sound by Adam Cork.
"Alfieri, an Italian lawyer and self-styled moral spokesman, provides a commentary on the action as the self-deluded, blinded-by-passion Eddie Carbone hurtles inexorably towards his own destruction. A compelling Ken Stott seethes with inarticulate envy and passion as Carbone, the docker. Unwittingly in love with his niece, Catherine, and jealous of her relationship with the singing, dancing sweetie-pie Rodolpho, one of the illegal Italian immigrants he's sheltering, Carbone betrays them to the authorities. Hayley Atwell's superb Catherine is initially all innocent bloom, but clouds over as the atmosphere darkens. While director Lindsay Posner misses a trick in failing to imply a wider waterfront society beyond this microcosmic community, the acting and the play itself are too good to miss." The Mail on Sunday
"The great and believable performance in this production is Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio as Beatrice, Eddie's compelling wife. We feel everything she feels as if it were being poured into our brains. Altogether, this is a fine ensemble piece: everybody listens intently and reacts appropriately... It is a brilliant and majestic play, performed and directed for the most part with a rhythmic energy." The Sunday Times
A View From The Bridge in London at the Duke of York's Theatre previewed from 24 January 2009, opened on 5 February 2009 and closed on 16 May 2009.
A View From The Bridge - 4th West End Revival 2015
Previewed 4 April 2014, Opened 11 April 2014, Closed 24 May 2014 at the Young Vic
Previewed 11 February 2015, Opened 16 February 2015, Closed 11 April 2015 at the Wyndham's Theatre
A major revival of Arthur Miller's classic play A View From The Bridge in London starring Mark Strong and directed by Ivo van Hove - a transfer of the acclaimed sell-out Young Vic Theatre production.
The original West End (Wyndham's Theatre) cast featured Mark Strong as 'Eddie' and Nicola Walker as 'Beatrice' with Phoebe Fox as 'Catherine', Luke Norris as 'Rodolpho', Emun Elliott as 'Marco' and Michael Gould as 'Alfieri' - who all reprised their roles from the original Young Vic Theatre staging. Directed by Ivo van Hove with designs and lighting by Jan Versweyveld and costumes by An D’Huys. Originally staged at the Young Vic from April to June 2014. PLEASE NOTE: Age recommendation is 12 years and above.
Arthur Miller's plays seen recently in London's West End include The Crucible (Old Vic 2014), All My Sons (Open Air 2014), Broken Glass (Vaudeville 2011), Resurrection Blues (Old Vic 2006), Death of a Salesman ((Lyric 2005) and The Price (Apollo 2003).
When this production opened here at the Wyndham's Theatre in February 2015, Dominic Maxwell in the Times praised "Ivo van Hove's intense and adventurous Arthur Miller revival," adding that it "remains one of the great theatrical productions of the decade. See it... an inimitable, unforgettable production of a great play." Dominic Cavendish in the Daily Telegraph highlighted that "the evening's greatest virtue lies in its atmosphere of heightened focus and the clutch of correspondingly intense performances at its core." Neil Norman in the Daily Express noted how "Ivo van Hove shears Arthur Miller's awkwardly stylised play of all theatrical paraphernalia and returns it to its roots in Greek classical tragedy. Mark Strong's beautifully controlled performance gives him a tragic grandeur... we gain a clarity in the telling and the play's architecture is exposed." Patrick Marmion in the Daily Mail wrote that "I've seen this show before and knew what was coming. What makes it so impressive is that it still takes you by surprise." Fiona Mountford in the London Evening Standard commented: "The experimental Belgian director is a professional declutterer par excellence and his radical rejuvenation of this overfamiliar Arthur Miller drama takes up a deserved berth in the West End after a universally acclaimed, sell-out run at the Young Vic last year." Sarah Hemming in the Financial Times hailed it as being "superb, searing production." Lyn Gardner in the Guardian described how "Ivo van Hove’s revival is so merciless that it creates a sickening sense of awe. It's like watching a runaway train hurtle towards you and being unable to move... a meticulously conceived production that reinvents Miller without ever getting in the way of the view."
When this production was originally seen at the Young Vic Theatre in April 2014, Charles Spencer in the Daily Telegraph praised it as being "one of the most powerful productions of a Miller play I have ever seen. It breaks the surly bonds of naturalism and the conventions of the well–made play to create seething intensity and savage beauty that grips the audience throughout its interval–free two–hour playing time... The acting is superb... I left the Young Vic in no doubt that I had seen a great, fresh–minted production of a modern classic." Kate Bassett in the Times extolled that "As views go, this one is not to be missed... performed by an outstanding British cast, working with the world-class director Ivo van Hove... the thrill lies in van Hove's combination of risky, experimental stylisation and detailed naturalistic acting." Paul Taylor in the Independent described how "the Belgian director Ivo van Hove has taken a drastically non-naturalistic approach to Arthur Miller's 1955 drama, set in Brooklyn's Italian-American neighbourhood, and the stripped-back intensity of focus is emotionally devastating... By the end, the audience is shaken by an overwhelming sense of catharsis. Unforgettable." Michael Billington in the Guardian commented that Ivo van Hove's "highly impressive revival of Arthur Miller's 1955 Brooklyn drama goes to the opposite extreme by stripping the play of naturalistic detail and returning it to its roots in Greek tragedy... It's a forceful production that offers a radical alternative to the conventional realistic approach to Miller's tale, without necessarily displacing it." Ian Shuttleworth in the Financial Times said that the "director Ivo Van Hove... has stripped Miller's play of virtually all naturalism and presented it as the essence of inevitable tragedy." Henry Hitchings in the London Evening Standard hailed it as being a "magnificent, electrifying production."
"Ivo van Hove's stark and searing staging of Arthur Miller's play at the Young Vic was one of last year's red-letter nights. It's lost not one degree of its almost unbearable tension or raw emotional intensity in its transfer to Wyndham's. The tragedy of Eddie Carbone, a thoroughly decent longshoreman whose affection for the niece he has raised as his daughter leads to an extraordinary and monstrous act of treachery, is played out in an unbroken 115 minutes... The production begins with Mark Strong’s tall, muscular Eddie showering after a day's honest labouring - entirely van Hove's invention. At the end, the stage is awash with blood, literal and sacrificial, as savage and sickening as any Greek tragedy. This radical revival of Miller's mightiest drama is a must-see, never-to-be-forgotten theatrical experience." The Mail on Sunday
"Ivo von Hove gives Arthur Miller’s A View From The Bridge a non-realist, ritualistic production, which turns it into the latter-day Greek tragedy for which Miller was on some level always striving... Von Hove’s production is theatrically impressive, neatly integrating the narrator into the drama and creating a powerful sense of inevitability about the way that longshoreman Eddie Carbone’s incestuous longing for his niece Catherine leads to his betrayal of her boyfriend. But it totally misses the vital social dimension of Miller’s bustling Brooklyn Italian community, along with the cramped living conditions in which Eddie’s illicit desires flourish... Mark Strong gives a deeply felt, if muted, performance as Eddie, and Nicola Walker is intensely moving as his wife." The Sunday Express
"The Belgian director Ivo van Hove knows how to strip down classics. Watching his sure-handed staging of Arthur Miller's 1955 drama, it's as if the play has been frisked, its didacticism and naturalism discarded, and its elemental essence revealed... The whole production feels as carefully sculpted as Strong's physique: no gesture is superfluous, and it seems entirely fitting that the actors pad around barefoot. The tension, frequently underscored by Faure's Requiem, never flatlines, and every character gains your agonised sympathy. At the end - a bloody scrum - you can't tell whether a family is struggling to stay together or to pull apart." The Sunday Times
A View From The Bridge in London at the Wyndham's Theatre previewed from 11 February 2015, opened on 16 February 2015 and closed on 11 April 2015