1984 the play

13 August 2014

The theatre scene in London is known to be prestigious and popular world-wide, and it's something I am really trying to explore more of. So when I saw a sale pop up for the play of 1984 (I think it was on lastminute.com), I made sure E and I snapped up a couple of tickets for a matinee showing.

I didn't know what to expect from it, having read the book but not seen the movie or any other adaptations.

It was a creative, effective production, and I think they captured the overall essence of the novel very well. It wasn't easy to watch, and it shouldn't be. The thing is, and I know it's a very subjective criticism, the characters of Winston and Julia were not at all what I had envisioned in my head when I read the book. I read it a long time ago, but I still remember distinctly the image I had of them - not in terms of looks, but their persona, their aura and the way they stood for what they did - and it was difficult to reconcile that with the actors I saw on stage.

Again, I completely understand that this is purely my opinion! I just want to give my honest thoughts.

I'm sure that many others have seen this and gone away impressed and moved, and in many ways I was both. It just wasn't quite what I had in mind.

Maybe I should try watching the movie? In any case, I am still very glad that I went to see it and this hasn't put me off trying to go to more plays in the least.


  1. Interesting, I went to see this on Monday night having got tickets for £19.84 each (I liked what they did there) from Time Out. It was definitely the most sensory play I've ever seen and apart from the relatively short length I can definitely see why they didn't have an interval as the build up would have been broken. I think it's always hard to translate books which are so much about a personal perspective and narrative onto either stage or film which are essentially third party experiences. I'm not sure what someone who hadn't read the book would make of it though.

  2. I imagine this to be a really atmospheric play! I haven't seen any adaptations, but the book is one of my very favourites! x

  3. I went to see this at the Almeida before it transferred! When I came out I couldn't decide whether I'd loved it or whether I felt stricken or even traumatised by it... I felt from the moment that the lights went down at the beginning that I was on a horror house-style rollercoaster and that things could only descend further from there, which was well done. The big reveal worked very well - in a way that I simply wouldn't have visualised when reading the book. Although I don't know if we saw the same cast, I know that I'd definitely imagined Winston as a lot older and plainer - the guy who played him was sort of cute though pretty weedy. Julia, too, was a lot prettier than I'd envisioned. I suppose that's theatre for you though...xx

  4. Don't watch the movie it was horrible.....

  5. It's ok to be critical, and I'm sorry to hear that it didn't
    match with what you read in the books...
    The 1984 Playhouse is a nice looking building! Xx

  6. I didn't even know they made 1984 into a play! I also am not sure how I'd feel about it if I saw a play because I also have specific images of the characters in the book. But I really like your pictures, especially that black and white one :]

  7. This probably isn't what I should have taken from this post, but I love that they offered 101 tickets for £19.84! Seriously though, I always find it difficult when there's a clear picture in your head about something, and then it's portrayed differently.


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