I booked Pinter 5 after I got home from watching Pinter 6, having been flummoxed by Pinter 1 I’ve become a bit hooked and will have seen 6 of the 7 in this series and I’ve only just discovered the reasoning behind the series –
Pinter at the Pinter is part of the Pinter 10 partnership with the BFI, The Harold Pinter Estate and Faber & Faber, which are all marking the 10th anniversary of Pinter’s death with a series of events celebrating the life of the most important British playwright of the 20th Century.
It’s taken me a while to understand what these performance have been about, or consisted of anyway. Pinter 5 comprises 3 ‘sketches’ or short plays.
The Room, Victoria Station and Family Voices, each of the sets has been performed by top, top actors, I’ll list those I’ve seen once I’ve seen Pinter 7. For these 3 we had Rupert Graves, Jane Horrocks, Nicholas Woodson, Colin McFarlane, Emma Naomi and Luke Thallon on the stage.
The Room saw all 6 actors on the stage at one point, with Jane Horrocks performing a monologue for probably half of the play, she was wonderful. The play was slightly strange as I’ve come to expect of Pinter. There were some laughs to be had, but the overall theme was dark.
Victoria Station had Rupert Graves and Colin Mcfarlane as a minicab driver and controller, both sitting in ‘boxes’ talking to each other through the radio. This one was funny, Rupert Graves who had a strange part in The Room was great in his little box, perfect timing seems to be a thing in Pinter plays and his was immaculate.
Family Voices saw Jane Horrocks taking centre stage with Luke Thallon, playing an estranged mother and son, they were again based in a room, but clearly not the same room as they spoke of each other and to each other as if writing. Luke Thallon was superb, looking at his credits, he had a part in the Favourite and was nominated for the Emerging Talent Award at the Evening Standard Awards in 2017. He’s an actor I’m going to be watching out for in 2019. It goes with out saying that Jane Horrocks was sublime.
I’d highly recommend making a trip to the Harold Pinter theatre while these plays are still running, but unlike me, I’d do a bit of research before you go, in a bit to understand what’s going on.