The Birthday Party – Pinter

Toby Jones

Stephen Rea

Henry Goodman

Maggie Steed

 

Producer/director Gary Brown for Radio 3 Drama

 

If a radio drama can sometimes rise or fall according to the quality of its cast then this version of Pinter’s is simply triumphant. Toby Jones is fast becoming the go-to man in either radio or television but he is just one part of some brooding and consummate performances.

Irish actor Stephen Rea and Henry Goodman are the menacing visitors who visit a rundown seaside boarding house to confront Jones’ character Stanley – but for what reason is deliberately left obscure. However Goodman at Nat Goldman, the gangsterish Jew, is supremely unsettling with his bleak and sometimes comic delivery. Maggie Steed is a delight as the landlady in a production which is a worthy successor to its various previous incarnations.

 

9/10

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