Six Actors In Search Of A Director: The dullest play of the year?
Steven Berkoff's new play Six Actors In Search Of A Director at the Charing Cross Theatre is 80 minutes of my life I'm never going to get back.
According to the blurb on the website (the programmes hadn't made it from the printers when I was at the theatre yesterday) it's based on his experience of working on "more than 50 movies" and if you enjoy watching six actors, play actors whinging about the lot of actors then you'll have a rip-roaring time.
I don't for one moment doubt that all the characters - here the premise is that six minor role actors are waiting to be called to set - are based on real people he's encountered while working on "more than 50 movies" but that doesn't make it entertaining.
It's described as a comedy. It isn't really funny, in fact aside from the odd very mild chuckle I would say it is barely amusing.
The problem is that the characters aren't really likeable and they act up to the worst stereotypes of the profession you can paint, full of self importance, self aggrandisement or worse still the tortured soul "acting helps me to find myself". And the performances are appropriately hammy to accompany the script through which they just moan. A lot.
If it was funny it would work but it isn't and no amount of hammy performance is going to change that. If you felt it was somehow lifting the lid on the acting profession, revealing something new and interesting then it would be engaging but it doesn't and so it isn't.
It's getting 2 stars for me and runs until 23 June.