Pride and Prejudice* (*sort of), a unique and audacious retelling of Jane Austen’s most iconic love story.
It’s the 1800s. It’s party time. Let the ruthless matchmaking begin.
Isobel McArthur’s adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, comprises an all-female ensemble cast, who open as ‘below stairs’ maids and, through a variety of double-quick costume changes, enact all the characters in this comedy of manners: from the Bennets and the Bingleys to the dour Mr Darcy. In addition, they all sing, dance and play multiple musical instruments.
McArthur co-directs with Simon Harvey, and she performs too, her switching roles between Mrs Bennet and Darcy is a masterpiece of acting. As are the performances from every one of the actors: Hannah Jarrett-Scott’s foppish Etonesque Bingley is instantly recognisable, and a far cry from her Charlotte Lucas – both inspired. Leah Jamieson’s Elizabeth Bennet is fantastically realised, and Tori Burgess as Mary and Lydia, pairs remarkably with Christina Gordon’s perfect Jane.
Men, money and microphones are fought over in this irreverent and affectionate adaptation where the stakes couldn’t be higher when it comes to romance. This clever, funny, extraordinarily talented show features a karaoke-fuelled string of pop classics including Young Hearts Run Free, Will You Love Me Tomorrow and You’re So Vain. The ‘colourful’ language and feminist take effortlessly bridge the gap between Austen’s Regency era and the present day.
Highlighting a time when women had to find financial security in the shape of man, by featuring such a strong female cast, certainly proves that women really can do it all.
Did I mention I loved this performance? I’m no actor, but I came away wishing that in some parallel universe or reality TV show, I might get a role in this production alongside these women. Directed by Isobel McArthur and Simon Harvey, since opening in Glasgow, Pride and Prejudice* (*sort of) has taken London’s West End by storm winning the Olivier Award for Best Comedy.
Running until 5th November 2022