Sunday, 2 May 2010


Jerusalem was magical. It was that rare experience (rare for me, with the theatre anyway) when you come out still so absorbed in that world, that the real world seems flat, dull and unreal. It was state of the nation stuff, but so funny and acutely written, it wore its politics lightly.

It's about Johnny Byron, a kind of modern Falstaff and king of misrule, a spinner of tall tales, living in a caravan in the Wiltshire countryside and playing pied piper (and dealer) to the local kids. The kind of bloke that is great at a party and a nightmare to have as a neighbour. It begins with him being served with an eviction notice by the local council, after complaints from people in the posh new flats nearby who object to his all night parties. It takes place on St George's Day, the day of the local county fair, and meditates on English history, culture and freedom, and the modern tendency of the state to try and stamp out anything it doesn't directly control.

Mark Rylance was amazing, and Mackenzie Crook, and it was a great cast. It's finished now, but surely will come around again, as it attained instant classic status, I'd recommend anybody to see it...

But... it was bloody expensive. We paid £48.00 a ticket, and that was right in the upper circle, and you couldn't see half the stage. (Everyone was leaning forwards, until a stroppy usher told them off.) I'm sorry, but that's a disgraceful rip-off. It's one thing paying over the odds for the West End, but not being able to see the stage? The theatre is elitist enough, but even after forking out, who's going to come back when they can't see what they've paid for?


  1. 48 quid?!!!! That's nearly 7 packets of Bensons!!! ;-/

  2. Well exactly! Johnny Byron would never have gone for it, he'd have caned it all on ecstasy and whizz.