Terence Rattigan’s Separate Tables

To the Warehouse Studio this evening to see the English Comedy Club’s current production of Terence Rattigan’s Separate Tables. The play is set in the Beauregard Private Hotel in Bournemouth in the mid-1950s. It has two acts, separated by eighteen months, and all of the scenes take place in the dining room and lounge. The England of the 1950s – drear, repressed, – is well portrayed. It was a land of poor food and seedy lodging houses and of spinsters and widowers eking out a sort of existence in south coast hotels. A former politician’s past catches up with him and a philanderer masquerading as a retired major is unmasked.  The hotel staff and the ‘permanent guests’ provide the social backdrop. This is Fawlty Towers with gall. It is also a world that has disappeared. Looking at the play today is a little like opening a first edition of an Elisabeth David cookery book. The grey world of rationing that David fought against has also gone, yet we read her recipes today with the same pleasure we watch Rattigan dissecting social mores and repressed passions. This is a strong production with a good cast. It’s on until 10 March and is well worth watching.

1 Comment

  1. Conrad

    Well worth watching and also almost completely sold out! As of this morning (2 March) there are only four tickets left for the performance on Tuesday, 6 March.

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