If it weren't for the 'misery loves company' aspect to enduring bad theatre with friends, the night would have felt like training in mutually assured destruction . The attackers played by the show's production team intent on undermining necessary conditions of good musical theatre with the audience as the defenders brazenly resisting the relentless assault. Any actor who is forced to bellow: "How can we be wrong? We're the Wright brothers!" must know that the script is flying (sorry) against the wind.
There is little in the staging or set to ever suggest the sensation of soaring (or the sensation of anything, really). I spent more time looking for the emergency exits than adopting the brace position. When I wasn't fighting to stay alive (I mean awake) I was distracted by whether the actor playing Lindbergh looked more like Wayne Rooney or Phillip Seymour Hoffman. But that's enough hot air for today, if only because the Menier is such a brilliant young theatre that you can't help but want to scale new heights. And, for me, one valuable realisation did come out of the expedition: Amelia Earheart's costumes made me vow to never wear my Snoopy-style leather aviator cap ever again. And that sort of insight always comes at a cost.
Mainstream reviews here:
Independent (honest) , Guardian (complimentary) , FT ( delusional).
And, of course, one is on its way from my most trusted source.