Old Times (1984)

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Poster by Sharon Hayward

by Harold Pinter

Directed by Juliet Male

Performances: Sat 19th & Sun 20th May 1984, Prompt Corner


Text about the play




"Watching Juliet Male's insidiously subtle production of Harold Pinter's "Old Times" ... was akin to listening to a refined piece of chamber music, let us say a piano trio by one if the French impressionists.

On this analogy, the piano is represented by Deely, encompassing the range from softy seductive to dangerously impetuous; the cello by his wife Kate, rich velvet concealing a baleful menace; and the violin by Anna, her friend from old times, the charm and grace of whose melody soars above the others and seems to reconcile all conflict within herself.

The piece was acted with rare refinement by Mike Mattey and Anna Greenburgh as the home couple and Sally Lill as the visitor. The smallest of movements was meticulously plotted, each pregnant pause was weighted word made to count.

Like the ripples on the water referred to in the text, each revelation sent resonances down the depths. Wether Deeley actually did know Anna in times pasr at a pub with the apt name of "The Wayfarers" seemed a small matter. The recollections of Pinter's characters mean more than dull, prosaic facts.

And so with all the other glimpses into a mythical past, Pinter is the theatre's acknowledged poat in this area, and Juliet Male's production reverberated like a finely-tuned instrument."

Donald Madgwick, The Croydon Advertised, reprinted in SCENE with permission.


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