Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Brownies at Borough Market

Friday evening saw me at the White Bear in Kennington for a production of a rarely staged Polish play, The Police. Written by Slawomir Mrozek, it's set in an unnamed state where the populus have become so loyal and unquestioning that the police are forced to stir up dissent to keep themselves in business.

I've never been to the White Bear before - it's a proper pub theatre, attached to a proper pub - boozy regulars and a mist of cigarette smoke. The production was rather ambitious for such a small space, especially at the start, as we were grudgingly given permission to enter the venue by an unsmiling, uniformed woman who herded us through the pretty grim corridor beside the gents toilets - much to the befuddlement of one of the aforementioned regulars. Unfortunately nothing in the play itself quite lived up to this inventive beginning. Though the satire still felt fresh, and I found myself laughing more than I expected, the staging felt rather stiff and the performances were only so-so.

The day after I made my first ever visit to Borough Market - and, oh my God, what have I been doing with my Saturday mornings before now? It was as brilliant as everyone says; Lisa and I stocked up on cheese and olives and bought some excellent walnut bread (and a large slab of chocolate brownie which I was compelled to consume in the grounds of Southwark Cathedral). Then we strolled back to Waterloo along the river walk, past the Globe and the Tate. Pretty perfect as days go. In fact the last few weekends have been really lovely, I hope the pattern continues for the pending excurison to Dorset for Dan H's birthday.

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