Aspects of Love @ Southwark Playhouse

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Tickets and more information: https://southwarkplayhouse.co.uk/show/aspects-of-love/
Booking until: 9th February 2019
Production Photos by: Pamela Raith
Run time: 2hr 40 mins incl. a 15 minute interval.

As it was an Andrew Lloyd Webber piece I was unfamiliar with, I’ve been looking forward to going into Aspects of Love with an open mind. After rave reviews in Manchester, director Jonathan O’Boyle brings his production to the Southwark Playhouse for a limited run in London. The musical follows a young man named Alex, who falls for a much older actress called Rose after seeing her in a production of The Master Builder. His obsession begins to grow when Rose agrees to follows him to his uncle’s hideout in Paris. However, their romantic bliss starts to crumble when Alex’s uncle George enters the picture and the remainder of the show spans 17 years after this meeting.

aspects of love 1

The luscious sung through score by Andrew Lloyd Webber, Don Black and Charles Hart is of the epicness that is typically reserved for the 1000+ seaters in the West End. However, the minimal theatrics in this production allows the audiences to have a closer insight into the characters. Not just because the Southwark Playhouse is a small space, but it means there are few distractions to take the focus away from this incredible cast.

aspects of love 2

Felix Mosse is absolutely astonishing as Alex. His voice is absolutely stunning and grabs the audience into the palm of his hand the moment he starts singing the famous ‘Love Changes Everything’. Not only that, his physicality in how Alex ages and matures is nuanced but does not go unnoticed. Alongside him is Kelly Price as Rose, who is captivating to watch and listen to with her stunning voice. She brilliantly conveys the journey Rose is taken on with ease as she begins as a romantic who hates the play she’s in to a independent breadwinner and mother. They are backed up with a fantastic supporting cast, particularly Eleanor Walsh, who lights up the stage in act 2 as Rose’s daughter Jenny who brilliantly conveys a lovesick teenager, in love for the first time.

aspects of love 4

In all of it’s lusciousness and intimacy, this is a very impressive production and another knockout from director Jonathan O’Boyle and producer Katy Lipson. The only issue I had with the show was the book. This is a very plot driven musical. So much happens plotwise that there often isn’t a lot of time to explore why the characters suddenly make their decisions. They just… do them, so the audience doesn’t really get to see that character development strengthen (because there isn’t enough time to show all of the important plot points). However, this may be as a result of the source material (David Garnett’s novel) which I have not read. At the same time, perhaps this was the intention of the book and allows the actors to have more freedom in their portrayals. That aside, this is a truly wonderful production that delivers some incredible performances and is worth the watch. There may never be a well done production of this scale again.

Until next time,

hayley-sprout-transparent

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