Subscribe      List an Event or Business      Invite a Writer      Write for WN      Writers      Other Locations

Butley at The Duchess Theatre

Home > London > Theatre
by Kat Parr Mackintosh (subscribe)
Young and coffee in varying degrees, Kat also says stuff @ThoroughlyMode
Event: -
Dominic West as Butley, photo by Tristram Kenton
Dominic West as Butley, photo by Tristram Kenton
It's forty years since Simon Grey's Butley first came to the West End. Then it was famously directed by Harold Pinter, and the central character to the piece, Ben Butley, was compared to other classic male protagonists such as Willie Loman from Death of a Salesman, Jimmy Porter from Look Back in Anger and Bill Maitland from Inadmissible Evidence. These characters are all intelligent, working men who became disaffected and angry with what life was doling out them. What separates Butley from the others is that when he goes down he goes down fighting back with his hilarious wit. So, while a tragic story, Butley is an incredibly brilliant comic play.

What's more Dominic West, star of The Wire, plays university lecturer Butley in this revival. And reviewers seem to be united in the view that he's brilliant in the rapier tongued role. West and Grey's Butley is a man in the throws of a downward spiral, whose self destructive nature means he can only make things worse for himself by hurtling energetically onwards. It's only the beginning of term but Butley is already having a 'mare: his estranged wife wants to marry a man Butley considers intellectually inferior to a cockroach, his students are dissenting, his department disagree with him and his best friend/ house-mate/ lover? may be deserting him in his time of need. But if he's going down then he's going to take as many people as he can down with him. Which leaves him ample time to quip and cut his way around campus on his way to isolation and self implosion.
Help us improve  Click here if you liked this article  7
Share: email  facebook  twitter
Why? One of the cleverest plays around
When: Monday to Saturday – 7.30pm, Thursday and Saturday – 3pm
Where: Duchess Theatre, 3-5 Catherine Street City of London WC2B 5LA
Cost: From £15 if purchased on the day, £26 in advance
More articles by Kat Parr Mackintosh
No comments yet :(
More London articles
Articles from other cities
Top Events
Popular Articles