02 March, 2013

The Judas Kiss

It was my birthday last week and my husband and I had a cultural night out in London to celebrate.

We went to see ‘The Judas Kiss’ by David Hare, which was playing at the Duke of York’s Theatre. It had unreservedly good reviews and, as per the reviews, was indeed excellent.

The play focused on Oscar Wilde’s later years, while he was being tried, and afterwards, once he had served his prison sentence and was living, impecunious, in Naples. As you might imagine by its title, the central theme of the play was betrayal—largely the betrayal of Wilde by his lover of the time, Lord Alfred Douglas (Bosie). Another prominent theme was that of ageing, with the vitality and inconstancy of youth (personified by Bosie) contrasted sharply with the slower pace and resigned acceptance of one’s fate that is more typical of middle age (personified by Wilde).

Rupert Everett played Wilde and he was superb. His portrayal of the spent, stooped playwright was utterly convincing. Hare’s dialogue was witty and razor sharp and, predictably, Everett’s delivery proved spot on. It was a sparkling performance and my husband and I left the theatre feeling highly satisfied and with plenty to talk about. Always a good sign!

If you are able get tickets, I would definitely recommend seeing ‘The Judas Kiss’.

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