Does Anton Chekov’s masterpiece fly or fall in this new production at the Arcola Theatre, directed by Mehmet Ergen. Here is what critics have been saying: 

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The Guardian: *** “while the production uses modern dress to imply that we too may be living on the brink of revolution, its virtues derive from its understanding of Chekhov’s steadfast refusal to editorialise.”

Broadway World: **** “The reaction the play still provokes, all these years on, demonstrates its power and, while some will wince at yet another evening spent agonising about that bloody orchard yet again, I don’t. It tells me, with wit and wisdom, a hard truth”

The Stage: ** “Mehmet Ergen’s self-consciously gauche modern staging nominally remains in Russia but feels like it’s set in Surrey.”

The London Economic: **** “Ergen seems to be asking us to look at it from a slightly new perspective where the humour is very much highlighted- particularly by a wonderful Simon Scardifield as Epikhodov- so that a sense of nostalgia held by Ranevsky et al. and the measure of their loss of the estate, both in terms of the past and of the future- is slightly suppressed.”

The Reviews Hub: **** (1/2) “Trevor Griffiths’s new adaptation of The Cherry Orchard, based on a translation by Helen Rappaport, highlights the parallels between the circumstances of Madame Ranevsky’s family and the downfall of Tsarist Russia without overshadowing the central story.”

Evening Standard: *** ” While there are some finely delineated turns – Jade Williams as a wistful, dutiful and quietly lovelorn Varya stands out – too many performances give precious little sense of interiority and depth.”

British Theatre Guide: “Ergen does have a good instinct for Chekhov’s comic vein—and he is aided by some terrific performances in the minor roles.”

The Times: *** “The result is a solid production by artistic director Mehmet Ergen that many will enjoy, but given the talent assembled that’s a disappointment.”

The FT: *** ” although Ergen’s blocking is fluid and lucid, I could happily see a variant in which not one of the actors ever falls to their knees at any point.”

The Cherry Orchard continues to play at the Arcola Theatre until the 25th March. For more information and to book tickets visit: http://www.arcolatheatre.com/event/the-cherry-orchard-2017-02-24/

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