Jessica Lange isn't afraid to give an unsympathetic portrayal of Amanda as she badgers her daughter when her disappointment has risen to the surface. She looks ghastly in her Victorian muslin ball gown, the dress falling apart with age. Don't we hate the way she swishes the full skirt in front of the Gentleman Caller to give a glimpse of her legs in a manner intended as flirtatious, but which is actually stomach churning.
David Jonsson has wonderfully expressive hands, his long fingers often outstretched to communicate. His enthusiasm when describing the dishes of food animatedly or his reflecting on his unexpected first journey in a limousine charm. There is humour too, he says, "I have a feeling she may die on my birthday," and gives us a wry look.
Albion is a slower burn than some of Bartlett's other plays. It is about Englishness and gardens and nostalgia and in that sense a desire, which may or may not be possible, to relive the past. The metaphors will be debated as the themes are many and complex.