On Theatre

David Benedict
Monday 16 May 1994 23:02
Comments

'If I'm going to have classics, then I want them done with a bit of vitality.' Judith Hibberd, skilled, witty and shrewd, is the theatre programmer at Watermans Arts Centre. Her latest coup is Arthur Miller's A View from the Bridge by Kaboodle Theatre Company. Who?

'In London, hardly anyone has seen them. They're Liverpool-based, and even theatre programmers don't travel out of London much these days. But for 15 years they've been touring from Israel to Bracknell. Their survival is largely due to the sheer force of personality and will of the artistic director, Lee Beagley(right, with Steven Brook). He's a kind of latterday actor manager. He's extraordinary.

'Kaboodle are all about energy. They take on mainstream classics and make them work, linguistically and structurally within a strong ensemble style. It's rare work of real quality. There's a strong undercurrent of physicality, but it's not physical theatre. They combine theatre, music and visuals. It's spectacle; a treat for the eyes and ears and all the senses.'

Will audiences travel to Brentford? 'It's perceived to be difficult to get here, but people come from all over. Last year we had their Lear which went incredibly well. The show had great word-of-mouth. And it looks like they're all coming back. The first four nights are already sold out.'

Details: 081-568 1176

(Photograph omitted)

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