An extra category this year as there have been so many funny afternoons and evenings. Eddie Izzard was very funny at the O2 (now available on DVD) and One Man, Two Guvnors was as funny as everyone says. Other comedies didn’t quite hit the mark, such as The Ladykillers. The Room Next Door was a good play with some very funny moments but the one performance that had me crying with laughter throughout was The Play That Goes Wrong from Mischief Theatre. They tried again with Peter Pan Goes Wrong which is probably just as funny for audiences who didn’t see the original but not quite as funny for those of us who did. I look forward to seeing where they go next – I hope it’s somewhere different.
The National Theatre was inconsistent again this year but Strange Interlude and Children of the Sun were superb. When I reviewed Othello, I wrote, “I feel pretty certain I’ve just seen the winner(s) of the next Olivier for Best Actor.” It’s too early for the Oliviers but Rory Kinnear and Adrian Lester deservedly shared the Evening Standard Award for Best Actor. The Young Vic shone with A Doll’s House (a strong runner up which I saw in the West End) and Public Enemy. The Old Vic didn’t have any productions that grabbed me until the excellent Fortune’s Fool right at the end of the year which I also strongly recommend. I also enjoyed One Man, Two Guvnors but the West End was otherwise a little disappointing this year.