We round up the reviews for Matt Ryan’s revival of Kevin Elyot’s play at the Turbine Theatre.
The Guardian: ** “But in the final, melancholic act, the pace slackens fatally while the silences and wan looks between actors do not build the effect they should.”
Evening Standard: ** “Stephen K Amos brings plenty of wit to his turn as a scotch-swilling geezer, bouncing perfectly off Alan Turkington’s wry turn as his dull partner, who’s swapped gay bars for planning his dream conservatory. But not all the cast are up to the job. And director Matt Ryan’s approach doesn’t give much shape and texture to this play, offering little to mark the shifts in time that these friends observe so ruefully.”
London Theatre1: **** “The personalities of each character have been translated from the page to the stage perfectly thanks to Matt Ryan’s astute direction. Little things define the characters. For example, the strange and restrained way that Bernie hugs people, the attention to detail Eric – whose dungarees are way too clean for a professional – gives to his painting, and the silences that speak volumes.”
WhatsOnStage: **** “My Night With Reg‘s success has now been firmly cemented by director Matt Ryan’s deft handling of the two-hour text (an ebullient, speedy first act gives way to a longer, more earnest second). Mixing fidelity and fear in a heady cocktail, what starts out as a story bubbling away in a thriving maisonette, thanks to Lee Newby’s set design, ends in what feels like a pale mausoleum.”
The Stage: *** “Matt Ryan’s production of My Night with Reg is an uneven revival of the classic gay comedy drama.”
Broadway World: **** “It’s the details in the acting and visuals that truly make this production. Guy’s velvet bow tie, his hanging onto a glass of Scotch for dear life when he entertains John, Eric’s meekness and youth, Daniel’s collar brooch, Bernie’s weird hugging style, John’s suspicious coughing at the end.”
The Reviews Hub: *** 1/2 “Matt Ryan’s production is an interesting examination of long friendships tested by external events and unquenchable if slightly stilted desires.”
The Times: ** “It’s performed with a thumping lack of nuance that works directly against the text”
Fairy Powered Productions: *** “Although I love the play I wish I could be more enthusiastic about Matt Ryan’s production of it, which skims the surface where it should cut deep, flattening so much of the rueful comedy and the heartbreak. It also feels miscast in a number of key roles.”
Boyz.co.uk: ***** “All in all this is a beguiling, bittersweet production of a play that has stood the test of time. Directed by Matt Ryan with a true understanding of what its writer, the late Kevin Elyot, wanted to achieve.”
My Night with Reg continues to play at the Turbine Theatre until the 21st August.