Purefoy, Smith & Miller Show Flare in Q&ADate: 29 March 2011
Whatsonstage.com has joined the celebration of the centenary of Terence Rattigan's birth by hosting two Outings to Rattigan plays in as many weeks. Last night saw 250 theatregoers make their way to the Theatre Royal Haymarket for Flare Path, Trevor Nunn's first production as Artistic Director at the Haymarket. Starring James Purefoy (returning to the West End for the first time in ten years), Sienna Miller (returning to the West End from a 2009 stint on Broadway in After Miss Julia) and the unstoppable Sheridan Smith (winner of Whatsonstage.com and Olivier Awards for her role in Legally Blonde) and following rave reviews we were all really looking forward to this war-time drama.
It is 1942. At the Falcon Hotel, on the Lincolnshire coast, Teddy a young RAF bomber pilot celebrates a reunion with his actress wife Patricia. They are thrown into upheaval when Peter, Patricia’s ex-lover and Hollywood heartthrob arrives and an urgent bombing mission over Germany is ordered. Who will make the sacrifice during the long night, as Patricia finds herself at the centre of an emotional conflict as unpredictable as the war in the skies.
An emotive tale of love and loyalty Flare Path had many audience members sniffing and the strength of the performances throughout ensures that you can't help but get caught up in the drama of it all. Sheridan Smith as cheerful Doris captures the comedy and sympathy of her role with skill while the intensity between Purefoy (Hollywoord heartthrob indeed) and Miller (actress Patricia) is almost palpable. All the other members of the cast create an entirely believeable and touchingly British sense of the desperate cheerfulness of war-time.
We were then lucky enough to be joined by the triumvriate - Purefoy, Smith and Miller - for a post-show Q&A which was by turns amusing and thought-provoking. Purefoy told us why his character, who can't see outside his own skin, so fascinated him while Miller shared with us her joy at working with Trevor Nunn. Smith told us a little about the research she did for the role as well as making the jump from Playboy Bunny costume to 1940s chic.
Please do feel free to email your comments and thoughts about the play, as well as any photos you have of the event and the evening through to email@example.com, we love to hear from you.
Thanks for joining us for this event, and do check the homepage to keep up to date on all of our upcoming Outings.