The first offering of the Welcome Back Season at The Theatre Royal Bath is the excellent Betrayal by Harold Pinter.
This is an outstanding production. Pinter’s masterpiece of relationship and adultery alongside the bruising dissection of a love triangle is told in flashback. The lies and deceit weave away great style allowing the subtext to create an illicit relationship with the knowing audience.
We meet Emma and Jerry seeing each other for the first time, two years after their seven-year affair has ended. Emma has recently discovered that her husband, and Jerry’s best friend, Robert, has been betraying her for years and has retaliated by spilling the beans on her own affair.
Pinter is at the top of his game here, creating a story that is both intriguing and accessible. The razor sharp direction from Jonathan Church ensures a hugely engaging experience.
The excellent cast of Edward Bennett (Jerry) Nancy Carroll (Emma) Robert (Joseph Milson) alongside a great cameo by Christopher Bianchi as the Waiter bring great depth and pain to the characters.
Armed with digital programmes, timed entry, temperature testing, unlimited hand sanitizer and advised entry and exit points, the staff strikes an excellent balance of roving information systems and the usual friendly faces; after all they are at the very heart of the building and surely deserve a mention.
This is a welcome and inspiring return to what is currently manageable in performance.
There is so much to enjoy and just for a while, escape from the bleak world outside is actually possible. Long may it continue and thrive. Support your theatre if you are able; they have never needed you more.
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Reviewer: Petra Schofield
Betrayal by Harold Pinter, directed by Jonathan Church, stars Edward Bennett, Nancy Carroll, Joseph Millson and Christopher Bianchi.
It is showing at the Theatre Royal in Bath until Saturday 31st October 2020.
For more information and tickets, visit the Theatre Royal website.