London Theatre - 2 Comedy Choices

Old Nov 6th, 2000, 08:56 AM
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London Theatre - 2 Comedy Choices

Has anyone seen either "ART" showing at the Wyndham Theatre in London, or the "Complete Works of Shakespeare" showing at the Criterion Theatre? Our schedule only allows the opportunity to chose one performance. Both sound excellent. Any theatre go-ers out there with comedy reviews?
Old Nov 6th, 2000, 09:44 AM
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Cheryl <BR>Art isn't entirely a comedy, it is a play with much humor but also with some more serious themes. It includes themes about art, friendship among men, men's relationships with women, etc. I saw it in New York, not London. I didn't love it, but it was well-written and well-acted. <BR>
Old Nov 6th, 2000, 10:20 AM
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I also saw "Art" in New York and did not think it was worth the ticket price. A one-joke story (a guy buys a white painting and his friend thinks he's an idiot), stretched out over 90 minutes. Yes it does try to say something about men and their friendships, but I did not think it did so very successfully for the most part.
Old Nov 6th, 2000, 12:16 PM
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If the complete works is presented by the Reduced Shakespeare company then I would say go see that. I've not seen that particular production, but everytime I've seen the RSC. (as in Reduced, not Royal) I've enjoyed it.
Old Nov 6th, 2000, 01:11 PM
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Have seen both, and would probably suggest you see Art as opposed to Complete Works. I have a degree in theatre, live for the theatre, and have extensive background in directing and acting Shakespeare, yet I found Complete Works. . . a little over my head -- I have a limited knowledge and appreciation of the history plays which is much of what that production is based on. Unless you are a major Shakespeare scholar, I think you will enjoy Art more. (But to be fair, I have heard from people who have very limited knowledge of Shakespeare who liked Complete Works. . . perhaps they were more into the slapstick than I was.) <BR>I think a good comparison of Art might be the TV show Frazier. It is much the same type of humor --witty and thought provoking, not at all slapstick. In fact a couple of years ago the three actors from Frazier were supposed to do Art on Broadway, but not sure if that ever happened. It sounded like perfect casting to me and I could easily identify which actor would play each character. I suppose on the positive side, Art is only 90 minutes long with no interval (intermission), so even if you weren't crazy about it, you wouldn't be stuck there all evening!
Old Nov 6th, 2000, 01:48 PM
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I really enjoyed "Art" when I saw it a couple of years ago at the Wyndham. Part of the reason I loved it so was that at the time it starred Nigel Havers, a British actor I've lusted after ever since he was in Chariots of Fire quite a few years ago--but it's also just an excellent play. Funny, clever, thought-provoking. They've changed casts several times since then, but from what I've heard the casts are always excellent.
Old Nov 6th, 2000, 03:23 PM
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Cheryl, <BR>I did not see ART but I did see the Complete Works of Shakespeare. I enjoyed it. As a Shakespeare fan it was fun to see the Americans poke fun at the real thing. You should not have any trouble getting the tickets at discount once you are there. I would not bother ordering them on this side of the ocean. I was able to get a ticket to everything I wanted to see from the discount brokers.
Old Nov 6th, 2000, 06:36 PM
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Cheryl, <BR> Haven't seen "ART" but have seen "Complete Works" twice. In January, we (six adults age 50+) got 6th row seats at the 1/2 price booth in Leicester Square and everyone loved it. In July, we (spouse & 2 sons) got 2nd row seats at the 1/2 price booth. After a three week tour of Europe and upon return to London, my two sons (21 & 24) asked if we could go see it again before leaving London. (We didn't) <BR> If you decide to get discount tickets, go to the 1/2 price booth that is located on the south side of Leicester Square for true 1/2 price tickets.

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