Starring Geraldine James & Matthew Kelly
4 stars **** GUARDIAN, WHAT’S ON STAGE, TIME OUT, SUNDAY EXPRESS
A raucous treat for the senses – Barker’s brutal, poetic, and gruesome Restoration tale of kings’ whores, bankers’ gold, and a widow’s quest to salvage a life from the debris and chaos of England at War. Oh. And her husband’s body parts…
As she is forced to react in a world of shifting loyalty, trust, power, and money, she discovers that the court of Charles II is as dirty and dangerous as any battlefield.
“What kind of monarchy is this?” demands the king of his mistress, with his breeches round his ankles. Drawing parallels between the political deceptions of the 17th Century and those of today, Victory is a powerful and cutting-edge play.
‘Britain’s greatest living playwright‘ The Times
‘The Cast is spot-on. Leading them is Geraldine James, who gives an extraordinarily brave, unflinching performance as Bradshaw?, with terrific support from Matthew Kelly.’ 4 stars The Guardian
‘The excellent cast clearly relish Barker’s brutally poetic (and frequently filthy) dialogue. Geraldine James gives an outstanding performance, Matthew Kelly is equally impressive.’ 4 stars WhatsOnStage.com
‘Nicholson’s pungent production offers a grotesque yet horribly pertinent image of the state of the nation’ 4 stars Time Out
‘Barker relishes writing about sex, money and power, and this drama is so meaty and juicy that it makes what currently passes as political playwriting seem bloodless and trivial. That is particularly so in a production as good as this one.’ 4 stars The Guardian
‘The ambitious Arcola Theatre fields a production of this dark, dangerous play that boasts a powerful, poignant performance from Geraldine James.’ **** Sunday Express
‘Add Scully’s luscious period costumes and multi-layered set to Nicholson’s breathtakingly adventurous direction and you have an evening which is gripping from dark and sinister beginning to painfully optimistic end.’ British Theatre Guide
CAST: Geraldine James, Matthew Kelly, Evie Dawnay, Leander Deeny, Tom Godwin, Gemma Johnson, Emil Marwa, Chris Porter, Nicholas Rowe, Karl Theobald & Simon Thorp.
CREATIVE TEAM: Design Anna Bliss Scully, Lighting David Holmes, Sound Francoise Ogier, Movement Tom Godwin.
‘A colourful slice of realism with strong, believable and heartbreaking performances.’
The Independent *****
(Summer Begins by David Eldridge)
‘Potent ’60s exploration of racial and sexual tension on the subway which culminates in a stunning coup de theatre’. Time Out *****
(Dutchman by LeRoi Jones)
By HOWARD BARKER
Directed by AMELIA NICHOLSON
Presented by ICENI Productions and Arcola Theatre