- November 6, 2017
Steven Berkoff is a man of the theatre, sometime Brightonian, who has many manifestations. As a stage actor his performances have always been powerful and well received, as a film actor he has gained a reputation for playing tough guys on both sides of the Atlantic – but as a dramatist his work has become part of the great canon of modern theatre and over the years, in fact 42 years since East was written, it has been a huge draw, not only for audiences but also for actors who have clambered to play in his works – and East has been amongst the most popular.
East is a sharp, funny, explicit, roller-coasting invention of poetic violence that will leave you breathless. It’s London in the 1970s and Mike, Les and Sylv are fighting for their youth. Filling their days with sex and violence, they battle both the boredom they fear and the inevitable future they see in their parents, ultimately finding that history is doomed to repeat itself.
The most exciting revival of East since the 25th anniversary tour
Berkoff’s first play mixes elegant Shakespearean verse with profane cockney slang, creating a violent, dark and beautiful language to tell a blistering tale of growing up and rites of passage in London’s East End. This is the world of the have-nots where then, as now, the poorest are invisible until they explode in rage.
Brighton actor Karl Kennedy-Williams (Mike in East) says: “This is a play that really pushes the boundaries of PC and basically says how it really is, rightly or wrongly. Can a play written 42 years ago still be relevant in 2017? YES!
East is a play that challenges the very social comfort we feel we live in and asks the difficult questions we can be afraid to ask.”
Brighton theatre company Snowdrop Productions originally presented East at the Brighton Fringe 2016, receiving rave 5 star reviews, universal acclaim from audiences and a nomination for Best Show on the Fringe. This revival, with the original cast, plays for two nights at Theatre Royal Brighton.
East, Theatre Royal Brighton, Wednesday 8 & Thursday 9 Nov
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