Look Back in Anger

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CATHERINE AIREY isn't looking back in anger.

Corpus Playroom, 24th-28th April, 7pm, £5-6

Directed by Stephen Bailey

[rating: 4/5]

Stephen Bailey’s all-female Look Back in Anger could have been a disaster. But it worked surprisingly well, probably because the decision to cross-cast didn’t feel like a big thing. It wasn’t a pushy theatrical ‘statement’, despite what the programme (Which I had to pay for! What is Corpus management coming to?) might have you believe. For most of the play I could comfortably ignore the fact that the men were played by women – a credit, of course, to the actors’ ability and the producer’s design elements.

Anna Isaac’s Jimmy certainly wasn’t lacking in masculinity. Her character was very believable – offering both aesthetic and economic explanation, for example, as to why her hair is unusually long for a man’s. More importantly, Isaac successfully pulled off Jimmy’s volatile and offensive temperament. The continual flow of insults had the potential of becoming tedious and monotonous, but she effectively balanced this with moments when Jimmy is to be pitied which Isaac played with great sensitivity.

The most impressive performace of the night, however, was Siân Docksey’s Cliff, offering comic relief in the midst of domestic disaster. Her Welsh accent was impeccable, as was her dedication to male body language.

The cast in general was very impressive, though the narrative did fall a little flat at times. This could perhaps have been remedied by some script cuts, as the play did feel long. The decision to include an interval (yes, an interval at the Playroom) was therefore very welcome, even if it did cause us to look back in hunger at all the real food left on stage.

In the final act of the play, despite one character’s claim that ‘it’s not the same’, it’s painfully clear to the audience that – in spite of all the drama and anguish we’ve witnessed – nothing’s really changed since the beginning. Bailey worked repetition into this scene eerily well, evoking a genuine sense of déjà vu without the play becoming repetitive.

And, if that’s not enough to convince you to part with a fiver, you’ll get to see some girl-on-girl snogs, and will be treated to a bit of singing and dancing. Oh, and I also learnt a new word: pusillanimous.

  • Furious Flashback

    Is anyone else disappointed that there was no mention of Takeshi in this?

    • What?

  • oi

    In a city overrun by the dictatorial nightmare that is WHP, Sankeys has, and will continue to be, the most viable clubbing alternative in Manchester. Complaining about rubbing shoulders with the locals is a moot point – they’re there because as an institution Sankeys has always done an amazing job of churning out artists you wouldn’t see anywhere else in the UK week in and week out – and have been doing so since you were in prep school. If you want to hang out with students then stick to the Thursday Full Moon parties kid. We’ll have the weekends.
    Also; if you’re going to Sankeys to pull you’ve got completely the wrong idea….

    • SankeysOldBoy

      Totally agree, you should be having far too much fun to be worrying about these sort of things.

      • dom mazetti

        yes sankeys old boy

  • .

    This is a terribly wrote article

    • oi


      • .

        Good thing I don’t pretend I can write articles.

  • Josh Flew

    i fucking hate everything about this article and everyone on the tab drags down morality

  • Doylem

    Cue angry Geordie rant…

  • zzzzzzzzzz

    The Tab’s editor needs to put a stop to all these sh*t opinion pieces on clubbing that have no credibility whatsoever, they’re actually embarrassing. Absolutely clueless, first there was the pieces notifying us of how WHP’s lost it (funny that, I heard they were doing great) and now Sankey’s isn’t worth the effort coz you can’t pull in a club where pulling isn’t what you go there for and you and your mates had to chip in £2.50 each both ways to get a taxi. BOO-F*CKING-HOO. You don’t have phone signal? GOOD. Too many idiots spend their nights on their phones taking photos on the dancefloor, Instagramming their clothes and videoing the DJ as if it’s f*cking John Lennon reincarnated on the 1s and 2s. You’ve got a problem with the locals? I’m sure they’ve got a problem with you as well you spanner, don’t go out in Manchester if you don’t want to be around Mancs. It’s their city, not yours. Go back to Suffolk or Surrey or some other dull southern middle-class hell hole. People with your attitude towards clubbing ruin it for everyone else, who is just their to enjoy themselves and get along with everyone, unified. Do us a favor and go back to Deaf institute, Factory and the Locks. It wasn’t until after January 2012 that the Sankey’s crowd began to deteriorate and that was because try-hard edgy daft c*nts began to make their way through the doors.

    I’m not from Manchester, I’m also a student but I love meeting the locals, I’ve never had any major problems with Mancs on a night out, it’s only ever the idiots in the student population who’ve got too pissed trying to show off or had their first key of k and turned into a staggering, one-legged mess, bumping into everyone and just generally being a d*ck that creates any hostility.

    However, I’ll thank you for your piece. Hopefully, all the di*kheads who take into account what they read on here will take your advice and stop going to Sankey’s so the rest of us will be able to enjoy ourselves safe in the knowledge that it is once again free from pretentious little gob sh*tes.

    • Doylum

      I think you are wrong. Just calm down and stop being angry about an article that is nowhere near as bad as your reactions.

      • Sean

        The closest you’ve came to raving Will is the time Look Right Through came on the jukebox at your local in Leyland.

  • Ajn

    Zzzzz.. Has hit the nail on the head. What is actually the point of this article? Seems the Tab will literally print any half arsed attempt at journalism. From the conclusion it seems the writer can’t even make up their own mind about the club and struggles so much to even formulate an opinion that they have to fill out the space with pointless photos (cue: confused looking girl, iPhone screen with no signal).The only legitimate complaint u seem to make is about the smoking area.

    might be stating the obvious here but Sankeys is NOT a student club. It has never tried to brand itself as such and only puts on the full moon party to make money. of course with so many drunken students making the pilgrimage every Thursday there are going to be queues to get in, for the toilet and cloak room (and why are they imbeciles?) Sankeys has always been small which is part of its charm. Rowdy locals are probably just infuriated that their club is infested by snobs such as yourself and who could blame them. Talk about 1st world problems: oh no a 15min walk or few quid in a taxi boohoo how far are people walking every day in the developing world just to access clean water?

    The real problem with Sankeys is they put on the student nights in the first place…

  • Jay

    What a load of nonsense!

  • skibadee di farda

    maybz laura should read less vice. rather than coming across as all kewl and aloooof, just seems like another case of entitled types with no interest in accomodating those outside of the uniiiii world

  • Browner

    Haven’t even bothered to read the article. Best club in Manchester.

  • tobias george

    f off lfp

    • oi

      will the real tobias george please stand up

  • Tom Kaye

    What a load of pretentious rubbish

  • la merde

    if you’re going to sankeys to pull you shouldn’t be going in the first place you clueless nobber

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