Sunday, 27 May 2012

Events While Guarding The Bofors Gun Review

Events While Guarding The Bofors Gun
by John McGrath
Finborough Theatre, SW10

A Busy Day At The Barracks

Time to take the dust sheet off TLT’s sidekick to trundle once more to the Finborough Theatre for a play with a documentary-sounding title about British soldiers in the 1950s' German Rhineland as part of the Allied occupation.  Or maybe the title has the dispassionate power of All Quiet on The Western Front. For this proved to be a thrilling evening with a 1966 play rightly dusted down and given a sterling production directed by Robert Hastie with a uniformly strong cast matched by clever, under-stated but resonant design, lighting, sound effects and staging. Inspired by the writer’s own bout of National Service, it somehow manages to combine seamlessly a cross section of characters familiar from many a wartime film with a grittiness, rawness, plus a leavening humour, borne from real-life experience, and a state-of-the-nation play: A sort of Journey’s End for post-imperial conscription Britain. John McGrath has now entered into TLT and her metallic steed's top of the pops top ten as a writer of plays to see and it's an unequivocal green light which needs no defending for this must-see watch on the Rhine.      

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