CurtainUp
CurtainUp

The Internet Theater Magazine of Reviews, Features, Annotated Listings
www.curtainup.com


HOME PAGE

SITE GUIDE

SEARCH

REVIEWS

REVIEW ARCHIVES

ADVERTISING AT CURTAINUP

FEATURES

NEWS
Etcetera and
Short Term Listings


LISTINGS
Broadway
Off-Broadway

NYC Restaurants

BOOKS and CDs

OTHER PLACES
Berkshires
London
California
New Jersey
DC
Connecticut
Philadelphia
Elsewhere

QUOTES

TKTS

PLAYWRIGHTS' ALBUMS

LETTERS TO EDITOR

FILM

LINKS

MISCELLANEOUS
Free Updates
Masthead
Writing for Us
A CurtainUp London London Review
Our New Girl

Share

Those Sicilians make it seem so . . . you know one day I actually watched Alessandra bottle feed with one hand while rolling dough with the other. — Hazel
Our New Girl
Jonathan Teale as Daniel and Kate Fleetwood as Hazel
(Photo: Manuel Harlan)
Our New Girl at The Bush is an exciting example of new and original writing on an old theme. With Kate Fleetwood, in exemplary form, playing seven months pregnant Hazel who has given up her career as a high powered lawyer to run a business from home, combining this with care for her eight year old son Daniel (Jude Willoughby/Jonathan Teale). Married to a cosmetic surgeon who periodically takes himself off to do charitable works in war and disaster zones, Hazel finds herself meeting Annie (Denise Gough), the Irish nanny her husband Richard (Mark Bazeley) has advertised for, communicated with and recruited, without her knowledge.

The prickly first scene sees Hazel emphatically explaining to Annie why she cannot stay and should return to the agency. The kitchen is full of bottles of olive oil from Hazelís foray into a new business with an inspirational woman, Alessandra, whom she met on holiday in Italy. The boxes of bottles of olive oil keep on arriving in London. As Hazel gets more exasperated, Annie is suitably determined and obdurate countering every one of Hazelís objections as to why she canít be their nanny. Indeed over the next couple of days the girl from Sligo seems the perfect choice for the idiosyncratic and disturbed little boy until his vain and self regarding father arrives home from Haiti where he has been operating on burns victims after the earthquake.

Kate Fleetwood is in top form with her tense defence of her territory against the arch manipulator, her husband who is a self righteous hypocrite. If there is any weakness in this domestic comedy it is in the obnoxiousness of Richardís character. We are subjected to his views on what women/girls want and his perception of women and childbirth. Mark Bazeley develops this weasel of a characterís persona superbly well with his mealy mouthed, long winded explanations to Daniel as he tries to demonstrate his awareness of what are good parenting skills. I liked too Denise Goughís openness and candour as Annie the Nanny, until cornered when she lies with surprising expertise, nailing her colours to Richardís mast.

All the action takes place in Hazelís spacious kitchen with Daniel creeping downstairs to eavesdrop on adult conversations, hidden from view under the kitchen table, behind the cardboard boxes of designer olive oil. Charlotte Gwimmer directs deftly extracting some brilliantly timed asides and raised eyebrow stares from the marvellous Kate Fleetwood.

This is a delightful play, examining sexual politics as well as the conflicts of career and motherhood, by Nancy Harris, the Pearson Playwright in Residence at The Bush and I look forward to seeing more of her writing.

Subscribe to our FREE email updates with a note from editor Elyse Sommer about additions to the website -- with main page hot links to the latest features posted at our numerous locations. To subscribe, E-mail: esommer@curtainup.comesommer@curtainup.com
put SUBSCRIBE CURTAINUP EMAIL UPDATE in the subject line and your full name and email address in the body of the message -- if you can spare a minute, tell us how you came to CurtainUp and from what part of the country.
Our New Girl
Written by Nancy Harris
Directed by Charlotte Gwinner

Starring: Kate Fleetwood, Denise Gough and Mark Bazeley
With: Jonathan Teale/Jude Willoughby
Designed by Morgan Large
Lighting: Hartley TA Kemp
Composer and Sound: Elizabeth Purnell
Running time: Two hours 15 minutes with an interval
Box Office: 020 8743 5050
Booking to 11th February 2012
Reviewed by Lizzie Loveridge based on 20th January 2012 performance at The Bush, 7 Uxbridge Road, London W12 8LI (Tube: Shepherdís Bush Market)

REVIEW FEEDBACK
Highlight one of the responses below and click "copy" or"CTRL+C"
  • I agree with the review of Our New Girl
  • I disagree with the review of Our New Girl
  • The review made me eager to see Our New Girl
Click on the address link E-mail: esommer@curtainup.com
Paste the highlighted text into the subject line (CTRL+ V):

Feel free to add detailed comments in the body of the email . . . also the names and emails of any friends to whom you'd like us to forward a copy of this review.

London Theatre Walks


Peter Ackroyd's  History of London: The Biography



London Sketchbook



tales from shakespeare
Retold by Tina Packer of Shakespeare & Co.
Click image to buy.
Our Review


©Copyright 2012, Elyse Sommer.
Information from this site may not be reproduced in print or online without specific permission from esommer@curtainup.com