This theatre trailer I do like - The Victorian in the Wall, Royal Court
Review: Adrian Lester and Rory Kinnear in Othello

Royal Court's 'Open Court' - is £20 per ticket a big ask?

Picking through the jumble sale of offerings in Vicky Featherstone's inaugral season at the Royal Court has left me thinking could it be a big gamble both on the part of Featherstone and on the part of the paying audience?

The main feature of this six week 'summer season' seems to be week-long runs of new plays performed by one ensemble of actors. The Royal Court as a producing theatre by its very nature takes continual gambles in putting on new work and here there are six new pieces in six weeks.

But is it an even bigger gamble for the audience? We don't have an inkling of the calibre of the actors who are going to be working multiple roles with only a week's rehearsal time. These aren't going to be fully produced plays and yet the non-concession ticket price is £20 or £16 if you book three or more; there is no £10 Monday performance.

The play synopses all seem very, well, Royal Court and that in itself can be a good or bad thing. For every Jerusalem and Clybourne Park there is a Haunted Child and a In The Republic of Happiness but at least you can make a judgement on buying a ticket based on playwright, director, synopsis and usually an actor or two.

Don't get me wrong, I love the Royal Court's Rough Cuts season where you get to see new plays as works in progress with a cast having done minimal rehearsal, a rehearsed reading essentially. But the tickets are much cheaper.

This is £20 a ticket compared to £28 you would pay for a fully rehearsed and produced play.

What is encouraging is that the playwrights all have good CV's even if their writing careers with the Royal Court are in the early stages. And you could end up with some interesting ensemble members but is it enough to gamble £20 of hard-earned cash on?

Tickets go on sale to members on Monday (interesting that the Royal Court is pushing membership on this one) and Tuesday to the public.