Thursday, November 09, 2006


Somehow the world seems a much better place today. And who would have thought that one person could have so much influence? No, I am not harping on about Kate Moss again, today we are celebrating the sacrifice of the Don. The man who Tricky Dick said before promoting him to his junta, "He's a ruthless little sh*t, he'll do well." Ah, to be proud (okay, let's just settle for not tragically mortified) to be an American again.

Filled with years of pent-up Democrat exuberance, I trotted off to the Donmar Warehouse last night where I joined throngs of London's upper-echelon theatre goers including Tony Bennett, by crashing (via a last minute £7.50 standing ticket) the Directors' Forum (read: stonking rich theatre funders) special evening production of David Mamet's 65-minute play The Cryptogram starring Kim 'SITC Samantha' Cattrall. In attendance was a large population of the Sloane Rangerfied Americans replete with pearl necklaces and quilted Chanel purses filled with admonition over the day's 'Bush bashing.' It was then I realised how the Dems pulled it off: all of the Republicans have moved to London!

But cocktail hour tongue biting aside, the evening was a resplendent, if cryptic, affair which is a tall compliment for Mamet who can be challenging at the best of times. Set in Chicago, 1959 the main characters are 10-year old John, his mother played by Cattrall, and a gay, male family friend. The drama centres on the corruption of John's innocence (and by implication sanity) after being thrust into the world of adult betrayal and evasion. While at first it was hard to believe Cattrall the 1990s Manhattan temptress as a 1950s Midwestern housewife, she merges the two by carrying off the scorned female with excellence. But the show-stopper was undoubtedly young John who plays a traumatised, Macaulay Culkin-like character with astonishing composure.

At just over an hour the evening was hard to fault and should emblazon even the repressed theatre lovers heart. And if you take nothing else away just remember that you never need to pay full-price at the Donmar. The standing seats are £7.50 and the theatre is so intimate (aka cramped) that you often get a better (unobstructed by a random, giant-sized, Dutch tourist) view from the back.

The Cryptogram, Donmar Warehouse
41 Earlham Street, Covent Garden
0870 060 6622

Until 25 Nov


Anonymous honkman said...

Ah great have been wanting to see it. So she was good, eh? And here we all thought she was only good at play shagging...

2:10 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dont all Americans love Mamet? I find him impossible to follow.

2:11 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mamet always makes me weep. Did you weep?

2:13 pm  
Anonymous Anna said...

sounds brilliant and seven quid what a steal:-) LOL about the sloanies
gotta love the Donmar
booking up now...beat you others

2:17 pm  
Blogger ems said...

Fabulous. Never knew about the standing tickets.I suppose 65 minutes isn't too long.

2:39 pm  
Blogger Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...

Now you're making me jealous. Oh how I wish I could be in London to see Cryptogram and Frost/Nixon.

3:35 pm  
Anonymous Glyn said...

Great tip
Love you CS
Just booked to take Teddy on Saturday
Jealous anybody?

3:52 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Crytpogram: a piece of cryptographic writing: anything written in cipher, or in such a form or order that a key is required in order to know how to understand and put together the letters.

For anybosy who is bothered.

4:06 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And for beraking SITC news

Announced just now “Sex and The City” is gonna come back on a big screen. The four fabulous leading stars, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kristin Davis, Kim Cattrall and Cynthia Nixon will be back in the city of sex again. US OK! magazine reports exclusively that a studio source has confirmed that the long-postponed project is closer to becoming a reality after “substantial negotiations have opened with each of the stars’ teams.

4:44 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ooohhhh...why didnt you take me with you?

4:44 pm  
Anonymous Jay said...

I loved it too. Such a gripping dialogue. Vince Vaughn was there my night (without Jen). The Donmar rocks!

4:46 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can’t wait to see them all reunited before they get too old to be single and fabulous or turning to be desperate housewife.

4:47 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Theatre geek gossip: Lucy Davies, the National Theatre’s head of studio, is to take over from Nick Frankfort as executive producer of the Donmar Warehouse next year.

Davies will work alongside artistic director Michael Grandage and recently appointed general manager James Bierman to complete the Donmar’s core executive team, taking up the role next January.

Good stuff ahead :-)

5:03 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hate Mamet so no

5:04 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds great. Heard interview of Cattrall on Today show a while ago. Will try and make it before it closes.
Like your blog site.

5:24 pm  
Anonymous Dee said...

sounds great
mamet is legend
can you still get tickets? standing sounds too hard core for me

6:06 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

£7.50 for a west end show? that is too true to be real. honest?

7:05 pm  
Anonymous Hels said...

I WENT to the departed last night and was just thinking it was a script that would make Mamet happy.

Cryptogram sounds delightful. I will try and squeeze in before closing.

ta ta

8:05 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

definitely an insiders tip there
cool stuff
like your writing too
Thanks Time Out

8:53 pm  
Anonymous frankie said...

got a stnding last night with nick
so true great show
go and see it

9:33 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

amazing news about Lucy Davies - she was only at the national for two years - turned that place around - from a shit hole to one of the most exciting venues in town and now she's running the Donmar!? She's one amzing girl - and real hotty too!

7:10 pm  

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