Review by Peter Brown
2 March 2013
Helen Mirren (Queen Elizabeth II), Haydn Gwynne (Margaret Thatcher),Richard McCabe (Harold Wilson), Paul Ritter (John Major) (Photos by Johan Persson)
Peter Morgan's answer to that tricky question is to blend fact and fiction. He draws on what is commonly known about the personalities of various Prime Ministers and the issues they faced during their periods in office, then mixes-in the character of a shrewd, hard-working and intelligent monarch, and finally tops it all off with completely fictional but rather witty dialogue. The recipe proves immensely successful so that the final theatrical dish is humorously entertaining, well-observed, and has enough in the way of authenticity to be (just about) believable.
In the lead, as Queen Elizabeth II, is Helen Mirren who has already had a fairly decent rehearsal for the part, as she won an oscar in 2006 for her portrayal of the same person in the film 'The Queen'. With the kind of experience she has acquired, perhaps she may be missing a few performances in the near future in order to stand in for HMQ while she recovers from her current illness.
READ MORE: http://www.londontheatre.co.uk/londontheatre/reviews/audience.htm