The Crown

The Crown
Alex as the Duke of Windsor

Monday, October 15, 2007

And More Reviews

David Benedict in Variety is full of praise for Alex:

Although not all the cast members are up to their sublime level, the frankly glorious Alex Jennings and Sarah Woodward sweep aside doubts about the play.


In a role he was born to play, Jennings makes ease look, well, easy. Despite peacocking about in a series of dressing gowns, Jennings never confuses charm and smarm; he sweeps about the stage like a cross between Rex Harrison and a well-bred wolf.

Exaggeration isn't Garry's mode of expression, it's his way of life. Leaping on top of the grand to observe himself in one of the full length mirrors lining Tim Hatley's boldly turquoise, sharply angled set, he cries "Oh God, I look 98." In fact, he's bordering on 42. Jennings, however, reveals both Garry's boyish bravado and, in the nighttime seduction scene, the mature intelligence usually hidden beneath his entertaining bombast.

Jennings' timing is so flawless he even finds space to stretch punctuation to delicious comic effect. Attempting to extricate himself from last night's love-struck ingenue, he trots out the line, "Don't love me too much, Daphne." But he halts momentarily on the comma to search for her name, indicating just how common an occurrence this is.

Full review:Variety

And Matt Wolf in the International Herald Tribune doesn't much like the play or the production:

But any "Present Laughter" stands or falls on its Garry, a role Jennings bats out of the park. Self-aware but never overly self-adoring, his aspish wit never so astringent so as to turn us off, Jennings gives us a Garry who exists within the confines of farce (Tim Hatley's set contains the requisite doors) only to realize, Feste-like, that life isn't necessarily a laughing matter.

Full review: IHT

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