Ralph Fiennes stars in this latest production of Henrik Ibsen’s The Master Builder at the Old Vic Theatre. But what have opinions been for Matthew Warchus’s production?
The Telegraph: ***** Jane Shilling found: “Matthew Warchus’s beautifully controlled and intelligent production is all shifting nuance and finely calibrated detail.”
The Guardian: **** Michael Billington wrote: “But the joy of the evening lies in watching Fiennes at the height of his powers and relishing a play that offers one of the most searing self-portraits in drama.”
Londonist: **** Neil Dowden commented that: “Matthew Warchus’s excellent production achieves a nice balance between naturalistic and poetic.”
Time Out: *** Andrzej Lukowski said: “The director’s reputation is as a populist, but his ‘Master Builder’ feels more like a mad curio, albeit one that’s a resolute triumph for star Fiennes.”
Culture Whisper: *** “There’s much to fascinate, but not as much to really move you.”
The Independent: **** Paul Taylor praised Fiennes performance saying: “Fiennes delivers a terrifically compelling study of a man going out of his mind with fear and ineffectual remorse.”
The Stage: **** Natasha Tripney wrote: “In the end though, it’s the performances that make this production fly – that and the compelling nature of the play itself.”
London Theatre.co.uk: *** Mark Shenton commented that: “Set changes between each of the three acts require two intervals, which turns it into a long evening. But it is a rewarding one if you stick with it.”
British Theatre Guide: Philip Fisher said: “Theatrical nights out do not come much better than this gripping production of an Ibsen classic.”
Gay Times: ***** Chris Selman found that: “This is an outstanding production of a fantastic play – not to be missed.”
Official London Theatre: Matthew Amer wrote: “Stonking debuts and a surprising delicacy from Fiennes; The Master Builder breathes new life into Ibsen’s tale of grief and purposelessness.”
The Financial Times: *** Sarah Hemming thought: “it is carried through by a fine cast and Fiennes’s towering central performance.”
City Am: **** Steve Dinneen commented: “David Hare’s adaptation of the 1892 play feels remarkably light, displaying his customary deftness of touch and a beguiling, if troubling, eroticism.”
Overall verdict: plenty of praise for all involved with this production – even if the play itself can be hard going at times.
The Master Builder continues to play at the Old Vic Theatre until the 19th March. To book tickets visit: Ticketmaster.co.uk, Discount Theatre.com, Theatre Tickets Direct.co.uk, Love Theatre.com, Theatre People.com and UK Tickets.co.uk.