Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Review: Love Story at the Union Theatre

Love Story
Union Theatre
Reviewed on Friday 3rd October 2014

I will never forget seeing Love Story for the first time during its original 2010 West End run. The show has popped up various times since; however, I hadn't managed to catch it until now. Love Story is written by Howard Goodall and Stephen Clark with ease and care, it’s delicate but also riveting and incredibly human. It was an absolute joy to hear Goodall's glorious score again.

Based on Erich Segal's novel which was famously adapted into a film, Love Story follows Oliver Barrett IV and Jenny Cavilleri who, despite being from totally different backgrounds, fall madly in love. Beginning with Jenny's funeral, we are then guided through the beginning, middle and end of the pair’s relationship.

The first half is mostly light hearted and humorous, there is a crazy spark shared between Oliver and Jenny which is truly captivating. The second half takes a sad turn; as Love Story begins at the end the conclusion is inevitable, but that doesn't make it any less heartbreaking.

David Albury and Victoria Serra take on the central roles and give their all. The pair are young, particularly shining during the piece’s fun moments. However, as the show progressed and the characters grew older the connection I shared with the piece weakened and, as upsetting as it may be, I didn't find myself overcome with emotion at the end (although I certainly shed a tear).

Sasha Regan's production, which continues the Union Theatre's Howard Goodall season, is staged with such detail. Love Story is one of the most stunning pieces of theatre ever written and I hope it continues to pop up over the years as I will never grow tired of hearing Goodall's score of wonders.

Reviewed by Andrew Tomlins (Editor)

Love Story plays at the Union Theatre until Saturday 25th October 2014.

Photo Credit: Darren Bell

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