A reviews round-up of Sarah starring Jonathan Slinger at the Coronet Theatre in London.
Sarah, now playing at the Coronet Theatre in Notting Hill Gate until 17 December 2022, is based on the novel by American Appalachian writer Scott McClanahan.
Adapted and directed by Berliner Ensemble Artistic Director Oliver Reese, the play is performed by one of the UK’s leading actors, Jonathan Slinger.
Adapted from McClanahan’s novel The Sarah Book, Sarah is a window into modern middle- America and an intimate, raw and surprisingly funny story of the end of a marriage. Scott is an average American guy. He teaches literature at a trade school, is married with two children and always tries to do the right thing. But what is the ‘right’ thing in the context of the American Dream?
Other members of the creative team include Costume Designer – Elina Schnizler; Set & Props Facilitator – Katja Pech; Lighting Designer – Steffen Heinke; Composition – Jörg Gollasch; Musical Adaptation – George Rigby; Casting Director – Helena Palmer CDG; Fight Director – Renny Krupinski; Stage Manager – Nick Graham; Assistant to the Director – Rasa Niurkaitė; Dialect Coach – Edda Sharpe; and Props Buyer – Sophie Meikle.
More reviews to follow.
"Pungent story of self-destruction"
"Jonathan Slinger is the antihero – and all the other characters – in an adaptation of Scott McClanahan’s novel, staged by Oliver Reese"
"... this is a modern all-American tragedy, spiralling in slow motion as a love story goes wrong."
"Companionless on stage, Jonathan Slinger transforms into Scott and all of the story’s supporting characters slickly."
"The dialogue sometimes lags. Scott’s efforts to get Sarah’s attention are progressively less surprising; there are poems, pretend suicide attempts, and camping out in a Walmart car park."
"Jonathan Slinger’s dynamic performance powers this drama about a disintegrating marriage in the American South"
"Jonathan Slinger is arguably one of the UK’s most fluid and chameleon-like actors, able to entirely disappear into a character and bring them unflinchingly to life. He drives this production forward, where the play sometimes spins its wheels."
"[Oliver] Reese draws on McClanahan’s dense, darkly comic prose to build a portrait of lives lived in quiet, almost resigned, desperation."
"Slinger’s performance is dynamic, and the set creatively becomes a man-child’s warped playground strewn with boxes, bottles and kids’ toys. However, as well-observed as the writing is, it’s essentially cumulative – just more brush strokes over a fundamentally static depiction. By the end, we haven’t learned much more about Scott, or Sarah, than we did in the first 10 minutes."