Review by Emma Whitelaw
SINCE its first performance in 1879, Ibsen’s epic tale
A Doll’s House has been stirring audiences world-wide.
Galleon Theatre Company’s production at the Greenwich
Playhouse is no exception!
Men and women, young and old, were all clearly moved by Alice
Grace’s stunning performance as the beautifully complex
Nora. Seemingly fragile and subservient to all her husband’s
desires, Nora’s talents are far greater than that which
first meets the eye.
The play takes place at Christmas, in their family home. Nora
and her husband, Torvold, appear to be the epitome of marital
They are blessed with three gorgeous children, live in a comfortable
home, are members of polite society and on top of all this, Torvold
has just won a job with a very healthy pay rise.
Their blissful marriage seems to be unshakable. Torvold sees
to it that his family wants for nothing. As the ever so faithful
wife, Nora does more for her husband than he’d ever dream.
They have all they’ve ever wanted, but it has come at a
great cost – one that could very well destroy their marriage.
Their perfect little world starts to come crashing down with
the arrival of Nora’s childhood friend, Christine, played
by the talented Kate Izon, who brings all sorts of skeletons out
of the closet - some secrets darker than others.
Nora confides in her long-lost friend that, unbeknownst to her
husband, she did everything in her power to save his very life.
She tells Christine that Torvold
was once very ill. On the verge of death, in fact, when she borrowed
a large sum of money to move the family to Italy where the warmer
weather soon cured her lover’s aliments.
Knowing full well Torvold wouldn’t approve, yet risking
everything for love, her actions prove that she is not only an
extremely proud woman, she is also one of exceptional moral fibre.
The performances of all involved were exceptional! Martin Beere,
in particular, was superb as family friend Dr Rank. He brought
such an exquisite sensitivity to the character and when he confessed
his undying love to Nora, it truly brought a tear to the eye.
The set design, too, was just as fabulous, right down to the
most intricate of details, including a delicately decorated Christmas
tree complete with presents tied up with string, it truly takes
one back in time.
The costume design, however, simply stole the show; each piece
was so meticulously detailed. A true credit to the designer!
Something must also be said for the Greenwich Playhouse, it is
remarkably refreshing to come across a theatre of such a high
standard – one that exudes class, yet is in no way lacking
A favourite of many, Ibsen’s A Doll’s House
is sure to be staged for countless times to come. Galleon’s
production is simply one of those not to be missed!
A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen. Translated by Michael
Meyer. Directed by Bruce Jamieson. Produced by Alice de Sousa.
Presented by Galleon Theatre Company. Starring Martin Beere, Alice
Grace, Alex Hutchinson, Kate Izon, Stephanie Nielson and Stephen
Russel-Bird. December 7, 2004 to January 9, 2005 at Greenwich
Playhouse, Greenwich Station Forecourt, London, SE10 8JA. Box
Office: 020 8858 9256; firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets:
£10, £8 (concs) Editor's note: No Performances on
Dec 24, 25, 26, 31, or Jan 1 & 2