An Inspector Calls – Liverpool Empire
Upon writing this review I’m still trying to process what I saw upon the empire stage last. I can’t put into words (ironically) how good it was, but I will certainly give it a go. It also comes with a bit of sadness because usually when I write reviews, I hope that it encourages people to watch however, this run has already completely sold out so if you like what you are reading do check out where it is performing if it’s in your area or an area near you be quick and snap up tickets.
I studied ‘An Inspector Calls’ by J B Priestley in school I would say it’s one of the first plays that gripped me and drew me in and got me in to theatre so when given the chance to see it live I was very excited. This production was directed by Stephen Daldry.
It was a dark rainy night; children were playing and a party was being had in this grand house owned by Arthur Birling (Jeffrey Harmer) and Sybil Birling (Christine Kavanagh) due to a celebration of a pending engagement of their daughter Sheila Birling (Chloe Orrock) and Gerald Croft (Simon Cotton). When an inspector rings the doorbell. An Inspector Goole (Liam Brennan)
He came to discuss a suicide of a young lady Eva Smith who died after drinking bleach and went through hours of excruciating pain. She (Eva) had gone by many other names to but had a connection to the family within the household. Inspector Goole laid out the information and interviewed members of the family. Asking how they knew Eva and did they recognise her from the picture shown by the inspector.
The staging and set of this piece, was truly breath taking. It was 2 hours long with no interval, but it flew by and it was very episodic. Now it is my job to pick faults, but I genuinely find it hard to mention any. The only one is that mics were cutting out, but you could still hear the actors very well. The audience mainly full of school coach parties were so invested in the piece that there were bouts of applause in certain moments within the show along with many gasps. Actor George Rowlands who played Eric Birling gave a phenomenal performance in the mater show.
This show had plot twists, fighting and captivating moments. You know it’s good when you can hear a pin drop especially with younger audience members. I so wished they added extra performance because I would gladly see this again and again just take my money. I hope it does come back around soon.
Reviewer: Luke Stephenson
Reviewed: 14th March 2023
North West End UK Rating: ★★★★★
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