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Review: Same Time, Next Year; Theatre Royal; Bury St Edmunds



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London Classic Theatre production of Bernard Slade’s romantic comedy Same Time, Next Year is an enthralling piece of entertainment.

It is a two-hander excellently performed show about George (Kieran Buckeridge) and Doris (Sarah Kempton), who begin an affair which they keep going for 25 years by meeting for only one weekend each year.

From their initial lust and passion, each act is set at five-yearly intervals highlighting the gradual changes in their physical and mental approaches to life. But one lasting theme is displaying respect for their respective families by sharing those experiences.

London Classic Theatre Bernard Slades's Same Time Next Year National Tour 2022 Director-Michael Cabot Producer-Katrhyn Cabot George- Kieran Buckeridge Doris-Sarah Kempton Photos taken at Malvern Theatres 26.1.22 Photo © SBurnett (54929427)
London Classic Theatre Bernard Slades's Same Time Next Year National Tour 2022 Director-Michael Cabot Producer-Katrhyn Cabot George- Kieran Buckeridge Doris-Sarah Kempton Photos taken at Malvern Theatres 26.1.22 Photo © SBurnett (54929427)

In time the humour lessens to be replaced by guilt: George wants to be honest but this is not possible, whereas Doris grows in this duplicitous role with a more pragmatic approach. Their relationship develops through turmoil and making concessions as though a marriage in all but name.

The excellent performances by the actors gives plenty of food for thought, while I think Walter Scott summed this type of scenario up in 1808 with his quote: "Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive."

Robert Wright