Present Laughter

Present Laughter
Starring Kevin Kline
Written by Noel Coward
Directed by Moritz Von Stuelpnagel
St. James Theatre
June 21, 2017
Production website
๐Ÿ’‰๐Ÿ’‰ out of 5.

Kevin Kline is just so good in this – – but there is just so much of this! ย After seeing 1984 last night I was so eager to see a play that behaved itself and delivered some acting and some story. ย Present Laughter, I thought – – there’s the remedy.

It was such a beautiful play. ย A gorgeous set full of theatrical decadence with doors a plenty and plenty of furniture to poise, pontificate, and pursue a dalliance. ย The language of Noel Coward is so rich and so wonderfully sarcastic. ย It is so nice to hear a play that has vocabulary that reaches beyond two syllables. ย Another real treat in the play is Kristine Nielsen as the personal secretary; I a still laughing from the work she did in Vanya, Sonia, Masha and Spike. ย She is a comic genius.

And Kevin Kline, of course, is just perfect for the role. ย He is at the right age, and the wealth of experience he has with Shakespeare makes him a true Thespian, in the most wonderfully pretentious way! ย It is hard to think of any actor that could wrap himself around a Noel Coward play and artfully as Kevin Kline. ย I just wished that he had started with Blithe Spirt or Private Lives. ย These two plays go somewhere. ย They put a bit more plot around all the clever lines and beautiful clothes. ย I just found Present Laughter so stuck in the sand – – it kept spinning its wheels but it just didn’t move – and the audience was soon napping away. ย  Not me – but I was imagining him on the veranda of Private Lives.

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