5 November 2010 WOS Rating: Reader Reviews: View and add to our user reviews The Maids is Genet’s notorious attempt at social revolution.
Two sisters share their lives as maids to an exquisitely furred Madame. Fantasising of satisfying their venomous hatreds, the two plot to murder their employer and better their position, acting out ritualistic games of fragmented identity and sadomasochism in the claustrophobic privacy of a Parisian apartment.
Derek McLuckie, William Brennan and Richard Pears are an intimidating trio of transvestite actors. White faced and dark eyed, their performances are energetic and entertaining, capturing the sensationalism of the material in a grotesque manner which makes the makes the play feel almost like a soap. Despite the potent poisons which creep through Genet’s subversive script, the tensions at the centre of the narrative are lamentably diffused by the production’s need to be humorous: indeed, the performances at times feel like a community outreach project to get out of work pantomime dames into legitimate theatre. Their wild gestures and comic local accents, whilst pleasing, devoid the play of any genuine drama and much of Genet’s poetry is lost in the cast’s frustratingly rushed delivery. Pauline Goldsmith’s interpretation of The Maids does not wholly work. Whilst the performances are intriguing, it lacks subtlety and, as Madame observes, becomes “the most extraordinary combination of luxury and filth” as a consequence. - by Scott Purvis Related Content Back to Scotland Homepage
Subscribe to our free newsletter
Featured Editor's Picks
To Kill A Mockingbird Twenty years ago, a young Robert Sean Leonard appeared on the London stage with Alan Alda in a revival of Our Town. Now he’s back, newly renown... West End Live returns to Trafalgar Square next month West End Live, a weekend of free entertainment from top London shows, will return to Trafalgar Squar... Robert Sean Leonard leaves 1st Night Photos: House for the Open Air Timothy Sheader's production of To Kill A Mockingbird opened at Regent's Park Open Air Theatre last ... Disgraced The timing of this UK premiere of Ayad Akhtar's Disgraced is eerily apposite in light of yesterd... Donmar stages Nick Payne premiere, Wesker's Roots & Tom Hiddleston in Coriolanus The Donmar Warehouse has announced its new season, which features the premiere of Nick Payne's new p... X Factor musical titled I Can't Sing!, opens Palladium March 2014 The forthcoming X Factor musical will be called I Can't Sing! The Musical and will premiere at the L... Clint Eastwood on board to direct Jersey Boys film? Hollywood legend Clint Eastwood has reportedly been signed up to direct the film version of Jersey B... Tanzi Libre First things first, it's great to see the Southwark Playhouse open again. Set halfway down New... Michael Coveney: Big Apple bites and Manhattan memories You should always do new things in familiar cities. Over the past few days in New York, I walked a... : Kendal & co in Podcast Relatively Speaking Q&A Last night (21 May 2013), 140 Whatsonstage.com theatregoers attended Relatively Speaking at the West...