EQUUS

Now this is a play that has meant a lot to me, and ever since I first saw it, possibly over 40 years ago, the presentation of the blinding of the horses, with huge lengths of red ribbons truly did change my artistic life. But the passion for the horses, and the actors as horses is something very close to me – men as animals. Oh yes. The wire frame head for these horses has become somewhat old hat now, and thankfully this production my by chum ned Bennett dispenses with anything as literal as that. Nugget was played by a muscular black actor in underwear who simply walked on stage quite normally, then started dislocating his limbs into something resembling all fours, not quite, but almost, then the transformation, with a burst of smoke from both nostrils, was complete. Utter genius. A production close to my way of thinking – no furniture, certainly no literal furniture, a fluid space with shadows, no real period, no real geography, and pacey and imaginative and thrilling. The blinding of the six horses had the lad naked and athletically jumping about blinding them with great flashes of blue and red. I was breathless. I think I finally understood this play, and as Alan’s moment of passion was envied by Dysart, envied and illuminative of his own pallid life. the word pallid certainly him home to this member of the audience. A brilliant production ignoring all traditions and history of the play. Fresh and exciting.