The Internet Theater Magazine of Reviews, Features, Annotated Listings








Etcetera and
Short Term Listings


NYC Restaurants


New Jersey







Free Updates
Writing for Us

Butterfly Valves,Globe Valves,Plug Valves link check valve, ball valve, valves Butterfly valves 2011.06.05, Gate valve,, Ball Valves,Gate Valves,Check Valves globe valve, butterfly valves, flange
China Valve manufacturer and Supplier
A CurtainUp London London Review

Midsummer returns to London in the middle
of winter at the Tricycle

The delightful two handed play by David Greig, Midsummer from the Traverse Theatre Company returns to London, to the Tricycle Theatre until the end of January 2011. The night I saw sadly the theatre’s heating had broken down so, in case this happens again, take a friend with you who can keep you warm! Everything I said about this play when I saw it last January at the Soho still applies. It is charming and full of energy and a wonderfully fresh evening of romance and serendipity.
Cast and credits as at Soho
Booking to 29th January 2011
Re-reviewed by Lizzie Loveridge at the December 1st 2010 performance at the Tricycle Theatre, 269 Kilburn High Road, London NW6 7JR
Midsummer by Lizzie Loveridge

And that love is actually just another word for "need" and when people say "I love you" they say it because they want the other person to say it back to them to make them feel good and it's actually quite an aggressive thing to say. — Narration
Matthew Pidgeon as Bob and Cora Bisset as Helena (Douglas Robertson)
Midsummer was one of the big hits at the Traverse in Edinburgh in 2008 and it comes to London's Soho Theatre for a well deserved run after a tour to Ireland, Scotland and Canada. It is a delightful, comic study of one of those improbable romantic relationships between two people in their thirties who don't appear to be at all suited to each other. David Greig has written the script but collaborating with Gordon McIntyre whose songs complement the action. The show opens (and closes) with the song, "Love Will Break Your Heart" and that is our expectation.

There are just two actors. Matthew Pidgeon is lanky Bob, a car salesman on the fringes of the city's underworld. He meets Helena (Cora Bissett), on the other side of the law, a high powered divorce lawyer with a sad penchant for married men, in a bar, "one of those cellar bars. A brasserie. Where lawyers go." Cora Bissett will take on many characters other than Helena, from her outspoken nephew to some of the low life individuals that Bob comes into contact with.

David Greig's zany script is lively and fresh with Helena and Bob narrating events as well as playing themselves and breaking into song as they strum guitars in accompaniment. Midsummer in Edinburgh sees only six and a half hours of darkness because it is so far north. In the course of this weekend, we live with Helena and Bob after their first mad, drunken night together through the weekend, when Helena, brought down by an almighty hangover, has to be a bridesmaid AGAIN to one of her three sisters. This will be the eighth time Helena has been a bridesmaid. Bob meanwhile has to sell a stolen pink convertible and get the cash to his underworld controller. Almost everything that can, does go wrong, and Bob and Helena go on a trip around Edinburgh stumbling into a fetish bar and hanging out with Goth teenagers.

Midsummer has plenty of laugh out loud moments as well as poignancy. The songs are fun and relevant, the characters believable even if the situations they find themselves in are imaginatively extreme, the action rings true and possible. Of course this has to do not just with David Greig's surefire direction but with two excellent, well honed performances. I loved the way Bob would describe what he thought Helena said, "How would you like to come back to my place and have extremely wild uninhibited sex with me?" and Helena would retort directly to the audience with a smile, "She so does not say that!" Cora Bissett as Helena is vulnerable and feisty, flirtatious and versatile. Her personality is warm, quirky and likeable. Matthew Pidgeon playing Bob has a frank and very funny conversation with his own cock which of course has a mind of its own. Matthew Pidgeon conveys Bob's essential modesty. The life assessment Bob has as a celebration of his thirty fifth birthday must strike a chord with thirty somethings reflecting on the passing of their youth.

There are clever directorial touches. When talking about the most terrible hangover, the house lights come fully on so the audience too feel the blinding, harshness of the light. We are given a map to help us follow where they go in Edinburgh and the location of the car park where Helena has left her car all weekend while the charges mount up astronomically. The bondage club sees the cast tied up, singing the "Japanese Rope Bondage" song, the extra dangerous titillation being the disappearance of the man who tied them up and who has to untie them . . . . The set is functional, the bedroom in Helena's flat almost filled by the double bed but adapts for other locations.

The storytelling, acting and direction in Midsummer is of such a fine standard I can't wait to see it again!

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:
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.
Written by David Greig and Gordon McIntyre
Directed by David Greig
Songwriter: Gordon McIntyre

Starring: Cora Bisset and Matthew Pidgeon
Design: Georgia McGuinness
Lighting: Claire Elliot
Running time: One hour 40 minutes without an interval
Box Office: 0870 429 6883
Booking to 6th February 2010
Reviewed by Lizzie Loveridge based on 13th January 2010 performance at the Soho theatre, Dean Street, London W1D 3NE (Tube: Tottenham Court Road)

Highlight one of the responses below and click "copy" or"CTRL+C"
  • I agree with the review of Midsummer
  • I disagree with the review of Midsummer
  • The review made me eager to see Midsummer
Click on the address link E-mail:
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 Tickets
Lion King Tickets
Billy Elliot Tickets
Mighty Boosh Tickets
Mamma Mia Tickets
We Will Rock You Tickets
Theatre Tickets
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 2010, Elyse Sommer.
Information from this site may not be reproduced in print or online without specific permission from