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Pride and Prejudice (Sort Of) - Nottingham Review

Isobel McArthur reinvents Jane Austen's classic Pride and Prejudice into a joyous playful romp that swooped the 2022 Olivier Award for Best Comedy. The hit production heads out on an extensive tour but does it live it up to the hype?

Leah Jamieson, Dannie Harris, Lucy Gray, Megan Louise Wilson and Emmy Stonelake in Pride and Prejudice (Sort Of). Photo by Mihaela Bodlovic

It absolutely lives up to the hype and more. It's a complete hoot from start to finish. McArthur manages to faithfully stage Austen's whilst giving it fresh pacing, vibrant colours and some truly hilarious comedy. A cast of 5 outstanding performers plays multiple roles with great skill and clearly have a ball in doing so. The infectious joy that is on the stage flows off the stage and into the audience.

The production is told by the female servants of a Regency Era household and this begins with some pre-show in the auditorium as the marigold-wearing performers mingle and dust and clean around the space. The tone is set for what is to come.

McArthur adds swearing, song and endless amounts of fun to the text. There are some wickedly funny innuendos thrown in for good measure too. Ana Ines Jabares-Pita's set with a giant staircase and openings for extra props to be brought on alongside her fabulously colourful costumes make for a visual experience that is embossed by Colin Grenfell's clever lighting palette.

Emmy Stonelake, Dannie Harris, Leah Jamieson, Megan Louise Wilson and Lucy Gray in Pride and Prejudice sort of. Photo by Mihaela Bodlovic

Ruth Brotherton excels as the central Elizabeth Bennett. She wonderfully grasps the character with heart and believability as the romance with the infamous Mr. Darcy plays out. There is a great softness to her performance too. Dannie Harris is magnificent switching between Mrs. Bennett and Mr Darcy. Harris has a ball as po-faced Darcy whilst being excellently emotive as the mother of the Bennett household and the exasperating hope for romance for her daughters. 

Lucy Gray switches between a narrator role, Charlotte Lucas and The Bingley siblings. The sneering way she plays Miss Bingley and then the larger-than-life Mr Bingley shows Gray's grasp of the roles. Megan Louise Wilson is super sweet as Lucy and then is the complete opposite as Lady Catherine. She is marvellous to watch throughout.  

The ultimate shape-shifting comes from Leah Jamieson, who is simply a comedic treat to watch. She plays the comedy so well, especially as Lydia Bennett but also a sublime performance as Mr. Collins. 

The cast of 5 not only switches roles with super fast costume changes but also performs the music on the stage with instruments and microphones. The cleverly selected soundtrack includes a riotous finale of 'Young Hearts Run Free' that brilliantly wraps up the performance.

Whether this is your first taste of Pride and Prejudice or you're a hardy Jane Austen fan you will leave with an extra boost in your step and an unbridled feeling of joy. It's a sublime production packed to the hilt with fun and sensational performances. Unmissable.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Pride and Prejudice (Sort Of) plays at Nottingham's Theatre Royal until Saturday 1st April. Tickets can be purchased from The tour continues with dates booking through until June. Visit for the full tour schedule and booking information.

Leah Jamieson, Dannie Harris, Lucy Gray and Emmy Stonelake in Pride and Prejudice sort of. Photo by Mihaela Bodlovic

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