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Wednesday, 31 May 2017

East is East, Nottingham Playhouse


Nottingham Playhouse is taking on Ayub Khan Din's well loved comedy production of East is East in it's 20th anniversary year. This new comedy production is directed by Curve's Associate Director Suba Das and what results in being a production that will leave your sides splitting from laughter. I was in awe of this fresh take on the only British Asian play to win an Olivier Award in such a well respected way. 

It is presented well from it's casting to the set design, with all attention to detail being considered to show what has often been known as a memory play of the writer's childhood. There was so much going on through the piece, transitioning from comedy, violence, anger, frustration and to love and relationships between one another. However, it all concludes with a happy ending. 

The casting is exceptional with this production. Fish Shop Owner and head of the Khan household George, played by Kammy Darweish showing us that he has his work cut out in 1970s Salford. It's unlike his beloved home of Pakistan where a father rules the house and Kammy's performance in the frustrations and struggles of keeping with his traditions is executed well. Coronation Street's Vicky Entwistle showcases her ability to perform something challenging as a British mum who is trying to understand the religious traditions of her husband whilst holding her family together. She was as hilarious and powerful woman as I had expected from her. The conclusive violence scene between both husband and wife was hard to watch but acted out sensitively. 


The rebellious teenage children are a ball of energy and fun throughout, there wasn't a moment when they were on stage that they didn't have the audience cracking up in their seats. I thought they're more modern ideas of relationships and careers were refreshing and more relevance to today's society. 

I loved how the lighting design from Prema Mehta perfectly aligned with the changing moods and enhanced the set design created by designer Grace Smart. The lighting design showed more Asian cultured colours which set the tone, setting the perfect backdrop to the 1970s styled set. 

This new production of East is East definitely works on so many levels, ensuring that the play grasps the audiences attention and is taken through the many ups and down of the Khan's journey. The language is what you expect from a family who sees it's traditional views be tossed upside down and in a era which challenges these ideas. 

I would definitely recommend you take a visit to see this top class theatre at Nottingham Playhouse, it capsules an important discussion that will capture your thinking cap. 

Performing at Nottingham Playhouse until 10 June

thanks for reading,


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