The original production’s planned transfer from Watford's Palace theatre was thwarted by a short-lived musical, Boyband. Director Harold Pinter called it “an act of betrayal and disgrace to English theatre” and now, albeit too late for either Pinter or Gray to see it, the Donmar and director David Leveaux are trying to right that wrong.
The Late Middle Classes centres on a young boy trapped between two types of oppressive love, which reveals the frustration, secrets and guilt of middle class respectability in 1950s England. Celia (Helen McCrory) is bored to distraction; Charles (Peter Sullivan) is obsessed with his work; and their son is having his first lessons in music and in life.
In conjunction with the premiere on stage, there was a debut of a different kind in the stalls last night - that of Libby Purves as chief theatre critic of The Times.
- Tom Williams & Theo Bosanquet