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Written by: Arthur Miller
Directed by: Susan Wilson
Love. Loyalty. Family. Revenge.
Susan Wilson directs her fifth Miller play (Broken Glass, Death of a Salesman, The Price and All My Sons).
“This is a play that anyone who really loves great theatre should not miss” — Stage Happenings
The great Arthur Miller confronts the American dream in this absorbing tale about Italian American dockworker, Eddie Carbone, who lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife Beatrice and his orphaned niece Catherine. When Beatrice’s Sicilian cousins enter the country illegally he welcomes them into his home. But when one of them falls for his beautiful niece, Eddie’s jealous mistrust drives him to commit the ultimate betrayal.
Miller believed that “the theatre is above all else an instrument of passion” and in this Eddie is given full rein. The top-notch cast includes Christopher Brougham, Jude Gibson, Alex Greig, Acushla-Tara Sutton, Paul Waggott and, playing the legendary role of Eddie Carbone, Gavin Rutherford.
One of Arthur Miller’s greatest plays, A View from the Bridge, is powerful, passionate and profoundly moving.
19 July − 23 August
Tuesday and Wednesday 6.30pm
Thursday to Saturday 8pm
Friends of Circa (until 3 August) $33
Groups 6+ $39 20+ $36
Under 25s $25
Sterling Acting in Opera-like Drama
|By Laurie Atkinson, The Dominion Post, 22 July 2014
It comes as no surprise to learn that A View from the Bridge has been made into an opera twice and that Arthur Miller himself wrote the libretto for the 1999 version.
The dramatic final scene of the play has all the ingredients except music of a thrilling operatic finale. Susan Wilson’s sturdy production opens and closes with an ominous drum beat as well as using music a few times to underscore the drama in certain scenes in this tragedy set in the tight-knit tenement community of Italian New Yorkers and their inflexible code of family honour.
It is surprising, however, to realise that when Miller re-wrote his poorly received one act play (a mixture of prose and poetry) and made it a two act play without poetry, which was first performed in England in 1956, that the West End theatre had to be turned into a private club to avoid the powers of censorship of the Lord Chamberlain who had banned it. Today no one would turn a hair.
At the heart of the play is Eddie Carbone, a forty year-old longshoreman who lives with his wife Beatrice (Jude Gibson) and Beatrice’s orphaned niece Catherine (Acushla-Tara Sutton). Two young cousins of Beatrice, Marco (Alex Greig) and Rodolpho (Paul Waggott), arrive illegally from Italy to work on the wharves.
The growing attachment between Catherine and Rodolpho releases within the inarticulate Eddie his emotional attachment to his niece that he cannot comprehend or control. The only person he can express his fears to is a local lawyer, Alfieri (Christopher Brougham), who also acts as a chorus to the play which allows the playwright to both distance the action as well as focus it for the audience.
It is in the scenes with Alfieri that Gavin Rutherford’s sterling performance as Eddie really takes flight. As he rubs his hands over his thinning hair as if to prevent his head from bursting, he repeats with an ox-like stubbornness “He ain’t right” referring to the light-hearted Rodolpho who represents a masculinity that is totally alien to Eddie. Alfieri can only watch the inevitable tragedy unfold.
“Eddie Carbone is one of those great tragic figures who we will remember long after we leave the theatre” – Examiner
“Visceral, vital…bound to linger long in the memory” – The Observer
Running time 2 hours, 15 minutes (including interval)