REVIEW ROUND-UP: Kiss Me at Trafalgar Studios

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Ben Lloyd-Hughes and Claire Lams star in Anna Ledwich’s production of Richard Bean’s play. But what have critics been making of it?

The Stage: “Anna Ledwich‘s tasteful production”

The Independent:  “The play, which builds to an impressively moving climax, would be even better if it sometimes exercised a virtue not often deployed in the Bean canon – restraint.”

The Guardian: “This quiet and often quietly funny play may be understated in its brevity and scope, but it feels honest in its exploration of the complexities of being a survivor in a world tipped upside down.”

Time Out: “This is a well-crafted chamber piece given a straightforward yet tender staging by Anna Ledwich.”

London Theatre1: “Claire Lams’ comic timing is superb, with a joyous mixture of sarcasm and quick wit”

The Reviews Hub: “The charm of Kiss Me is limited and 75 minutes is just about right, but it is a gentle little comedy that amuses and touches in equal measure.”

The Telegraph: “Anna Ledwich’s finely tuned production finds real tenderness in the emotional collision between two lost souls. A touching little show.”

British Theatre.com:  “Bean always creates strong, interesting characters, and this small, yet powerful play, is well worth catching.”

British Theatre Guide: “may be painted on a small canvas but it is an intelligent work that fully deserves its West End transfer.”

Everything Theatre: “This is an incredibly intelligent play, weighted in historical fact, but it’s full of life, too; it tugs on your heartstrings and certainly makes you laugh.”

Evening Standard: “Anna Ledwich’s production is intimate, unpacking the nuances of the writing in a style that’s occasionally a little finicky.”

The Sweet London Life: “At just 70 minutes, you are definitely left with unanswered questions and it wouldn’t hurt to explore some of the issue and characters a little deeper, but this play is, nevertheless, an insightful and relevant work, which is worth a look.”

Theatre Weekly: Kiss Me is an interesting concept with a strong duo in the central roles, but the writing lets it down, the constant back and forth, while occasionally amusing, just feels too contrived.”

The Times: “It feels like a writing exercise in which ideas never quite find the characters to carry them, like a cake that hasn’t risen.”

Broadway World: “The convergence of war and creation, love and hate, passion and apathy, involvement and recoil make Bean’s play a provocative, funny and sexually charged piece of theatre.”

Theatre Bubble: “a very funny, very thought-provoking play that is well executed and is definitely worth going to see.”

Plays To See: “Stylistically, Kiss Me is authentic, engaging and a refreshing take on this era, away from the battlefield or the patriarchal political system.”

City AM: “Post-war re-population is a weighty subject, but playwright Richard Bean builds a convincing argument through his twin leads, although he occasionally reaches a little too far in pursuit of their motivation.”

The Peg: “this small and intense drama is undoubtedly an excellent piece, and few, I suspect, would fail to be moved by it.”

Kiss Me continues to play at the Trafalgar Studios  until the 8th July.

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Emma Clarendon
Emma Clarendon studied drama through A-Level before deciding she was much better suited to writing about theatre than appearing onstage. She’s written for a number of online publications ever since, including The News Hub and Art Info. Emma set up her own blog, Love London Love Culture, in April 2015 and tweets at LoveLDNLoveCul.
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Emma Clarendon on FacebookEmma Clarendon on InstagramEmma Clarendon on RssEmma Clarendon on Twitter
Emma Clarendon
Emma Clarendon studied drama through A-Level before deciding she was much better suited to writing about theatre than appearing onstage. She’s written for a number of online publications ever since, including The News Hub and Art Info. Emma set up her own blog, Love London Love Culture, in April 2015 and tweets at LoveLDNLoveCul.

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