Monday, October 01, 2007

'Donkeys' Years' by Michael Frayn

1 October 2007

On Saturday we were at Milton Keynes Theatre to see 'Donkeys' Years' by Michael Frayn. A group of middle-aged men assemble in "one of the smaller courts, in one of the lesser colleges, at one of the older universities" for a college reunion 25 years on. Finding themselves quartered in their old college rooms, they soon revert to their student behaviour and there is much drinking, running in and out of bedrooms, defacing the statue of King Henry and throwing people in the lake. Not much of a story but a very slick and well-paced farce. This is quite an early Michael Frayn play - later he would create the classic de-constructed farce, 'Noises Off' - 'Donkeys' Years' is more one-dimensional but very funny nonetheless. This production is now touring after a stint in the West End and boasts a cast of very familiar faces including Ian Lavendar, Richard Hope, Sara Crowe and Norman Pace but the evening belongs to Mark Hadfield - great physical comedy and timing.

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