Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s play that inspired the hit television series is making its West End debut at the Wyndham’s Theatre for a limited season. Love London Love Culture rounds up the reviews.
Evening Standard: **** “at heart, this is storytelling in a beautifully pure form: just Waller-Bridge, her rolling eyes and expressive half-sneer, a chair, a couple of voice-overs and some distressing guinea pig sound effects.”
The Independent: **** “Waller-Bridge impressively manages to make matters feel remarkably intimate and conspiratorial, drawing you in with those judgemental eyebrow swoops and wicked grins.”
The Telegraph: **** “this small but perfectly formed little critter of a show – fluffy on the outside but with sharp teeth – is a model of how to achieve theatrical riches on a shoestring.”
The Guardian: **** “Vicky Jones’s production and Isobel Waller-Bridge’s sound design enhance the performance by their essential simplicity and, although the show has been over-hyped, it is still quirky and original. It offers a remarkable portrait of a modern woman who shamelessly bares her soul and in so doing reveals her essential solitude.”
Time Out: **** “But the return of the original monologue isn’t just an ego trip; it’s a piece of theatre that still really stands up (though I’d love to hear somebody justify those top prices). With Waller-Bridge off writing a Bond film now, I doubt we’ll see her on the stage any time soon. So let’s savour this dark night of the soul, one last time.”
iNews: ***** “Waller-Bridge never allows the audience to sit with one emotion for long, as she whirls from bawdy anecdote to tragic tale to arch remark. She lays out the very worst, darkest thoughts a person might have and encourages us to laugh at, recoil from and embrace them all at once. It’s dizzying and thrillingly transgressive.”
Exeunt Magazine: “Fleabag feels distinctly like a young woman’s story, a time capsule from when Waller Bridge was 27 and insecure, instead of 34 and on top of the world. The invisible elapsed years coat her performance in a kind of knowingness: it’s all going to be okay.”
A Younger Theatre: **** “The fact that Waller-Bridge’s words are still able to draw breath from her audience justifies Fleabag’s power. While not as radical now as when it first exploded into the creative stratosphere, the play remains impactful.”
British Theatre Guide: “With the guidance of original director Vicky Jones, the actress has broadened the performance as befits a space where 95% of the audience is further away than anybody at the original production.”
Fleabag continues to play at the Wyndham’s Theatre until the 14th September.