Theatre review: Mark Strong stars in A View From the Bridge

Mark Strong (right) and Michael Gould fighting it out in A View From the Bridge (Source: Jan Versweyveld)

Wyndham’s Theatre | ★★★★☆

The set in Ivo van Hove’s lauded adaptation of Arthur Miller’s classic A View From the Bridge (first shown at the Young Vic in 2014) evokes both a boxing ring and a pagan temple. It’s an ideal space for a play in which desire wrestles with reason on the way to an inevitable sacrifice.
Mark Strong reprises the role he played to such acclaim last year and again he brings a hauntedness and lumbering decency to the role of Eddie Carbone. Phoebe Fox is also excellent as Catherine, his 18-year-old niece making her first tentative steps into a sexually complicated adult world.
The unfussy set is matched with a beautifully ethereal lighting and the faint, unsettling sound of Fauré’s Requiem in the background. Van Hove’s experimental flourishes only serve to enhance the universal appeal of a play that can get lost in a gaggle of comedy Noo Yoik accents. Talking of accents, this is the one area that really lets the production down. Michael Gould’s Mr Alfieri starts off in Brooklyn but travels back to London via South Africa during the two hour, interval-less runtime. Apart from that, this production is a masterclass in brutal simplicity.

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