THEATRE JOHN NATHAN

The Jewish Chronicle - - Arts & Entertainment -

Wyn­d­ham’s Theatre, London WC2

THE King’s Speech was an un­pro­duced play be­fore it be­came an Os­car-win­ning film.

David Sei­dler, who wrote both, is go­ing to get two hits out of one com­pelling story — how the King Ge­orge VI (aka Ber­tie) re­lied on an Aus­tralian com­moner to get over the crip­pling stut­ter that made his ev­ery speech a ter­ror, and his whole life a mis­ery.

Adrian No­ble’s pro­duc­tion is an­chored by the fric­tion and grow­ing friend­ship be­tween two men from op­po­site ends of the so­cial spec­trum, and the planet.

Both are su­perbly played. Charles Ed­wards is ma­jes­tic and vul­ner­a­ble as the monarch. Jonathan Hyde is Lionel, the un­flap­pable Aussie ther­a­pist.

At its best, this is a fine psy­cho­log­i­cal drama that delves deeply into a royal’s dys­func­tional child­hood and pits a work­ing­man’s im­per­ti­nence against re­gal im­pe­ri­ous­ness.

Sei­dler’s witty script un­folds ex­actly as you would ex­pect, but also ex­actly as you would want— very en­joy­ably. ( www. del­font­mack­in­tosh.co.uk)

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