Lady Chatterley's Lover ★★★ GBM Productions (online) | Oct 15 - Nov 21, 2021


Lady Chatterley's Lover isn't the first novel one would consider turning into a musical. Its notoriety for scenes of a sexual nature and forthright language still casts a shadow sixty years on. There is little chance of notoriety here in John Robinson and Phil Willmott's somewhat anodyne interpretation. Beautifully orchestrated and very well sung by the cast of six, musically there is much to enjoy. Michael Pickering's Oliver Mellors works well and has some heartfelt songs whilst Georgia Lennon is rightly passionate as Lady Constance. Their love duet, which forms the climax of Act One, is outstanding. As Sir Clifford, Sam Kipling sings well but has a difficult task as the crippled and cuckold husband who apparently exploits his employees in his coal mine. Emma Lindars as Mrs. Bolton sings an impassioned polemic about this, but social issues don't sit comfortably with the musical romance. In a futile attempt to introduce some comedy, the character of Tommy Dukes (Jake Halsey-Jones), a dry asexual military man in the novel, becomes an unfunny camp comic turn. Andrew Exeter's design gives us a two tier set with Wragby Hall above a gloomy forest of birch trees where Mellors works, lives and meets Connie. We felt it might look better the other way up, giving the trees a chance to soar and be filled with dappled, romantic sunlight. For us, Sasha Regan's production has the elements of success, but at the moment, it remains more of a glint in the eye.

Rated: ★★★

Reviewed by D.S.J.
Photo by Mark Senior.

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