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Review of Westacre Theatre’s Harold Pinter play Betrayal: Theatre-goers are always delivered a top-notch show





Tensions were hanging in the air along with part of the set in this inventive interpretation of a play exploring infidelity.

Performers took to the stage at Westacre Theatre in Harold Pinter’s play Betrayal where they expressed suppressed rage and jealousy as the action played out.

The production had a lot of layers - with set furniture hanging from the ceiling reflecting the depth of the characters’ feelings.

Sadie Grist as Emma in Betrayal at Westacre Theatre. PHOTO: SUBMITTED
Sadie Grist as Emma in Betrayal at Westacre Theatre. PHOTO: SUBMITTED

The strong cast featured Matt and Sadie Grist who run the award-winning riverside venue alongside Kieran Gough with supporting roles from Andy Lofthouse and David Connor.

Their portrayal of characters Emma, Robert and Jerry delved into a range of emotions following extra-marital affairs between Emma and her husband’s best friend.

Interestingly there was jealousy shown throughout in the intricacies of friendship and marriage and the actors held their own in the playwright’s exploration of complex relationships.

Sadie Grist as Emma has an affair with husband's best friend Jerry. PHOTO: SUBMITTED
Sadie Grist as Emma has an affair with husband's best friend Jerry. PHOTO: SUBMITTED

Harold Pinter CBE was a British playwright, screenwriter, director and actor and Betrayal first premiered in 1978.

It is semi-autobiographical allegedly inspired by Pinter’s affair with broadcaster Joan Bakewell.

The story is told backwards and the audience focuses on the whys rather than what happens and it makes you think.

Sadie Grist and Kieran Gough in the play which unfolds backwards in time. PHOTO: SUBMITTED
Sadie Grist and Kieran Gough in the play which unfolds backwards in time. PHOTO: SUBMITTED

Matt Grist is a seasoned performer and looks effortlessly calm on stage as the cuckolded Robert - although it transpired he has not been faithful to his wife Emma either.

Sadie Grist portrays Emma who has an affair with her husband’s best friend Robert and a tangled web is weaved with jealousy in all directions - even from her due to them being best friends and her lover’s wife.

A supportive audience watched the show and the music as usual added to the performance - with acoustic music from Supertramp adding to the 70s vibe.

LtoR: Matt Grist, Sadie Grist and Kieran Gough in a tangled web of deceit. PHOTO: SUBMITTED
LtoR: Matt Grist, Sadie Grist and Kieran Gough in a tangled web of deceit. PHOTO: SUBMITTED

Costumes were reflective of the era it was set in between 1967 and 1977 with some questionable flairs and hues of mustard and brown.

As usual, it was a top-rate production in a varied programme of events at the theatre and it continues to be supported by theatre-goers who are always delivered a top-notch show.

Catch the show if you can on Saturday, March 23 3pm and 7.30pm and Sunday, March 24 at 3pm.

Visit www.westacretheatre.com for further details.

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