Pity by Rory Mullarkey at Royal Court Theatre – Review

PITY by Rory Mullarkey at Royal Court Theatre – Copyright: Helen Murray

This production was run at the Royal Court Theatre during the heatwave that hit the UK in July and although due to transport problems, I missed the free ice-cream but fortunately arrived at the theatre before everyone was seated.

But was it worth the rush hour heat in the London tube?

On arrival at our seats we were welcomed into the auditorium by a brightly lit stage, with a lovely town centre set and a brass band playing wonderful music, there was also some raffle prizes given out to some audience members.

The set looks like an innocent,  happy go-lucky town, with lots of bright primary colours reminiscent of a town from a CBBC TV show.

Have a look at the trailer….

The Story

As you may have realised from the trailer, this picture perfect town doesn’t stay like that for too long…

First we meet, the various happy characters of this colourful town,  we learn about a daughter’s relationship with her father,  watch a romance start and  develop, then there is a lightning strike, a death and 2 bombs and a the start of a full on war – all in one day – Yes, you read that correct, all in one day!

PITY Production at Royal Court – Credit: Helen-Murray

The synopsis on the from the play reads;

“Two bombs in one day is a foul coincidence”
“Don’t forget the lightning strike”

A normal day.

A person stands in the market square watching the world go by.

What happens next verges on the ridiculous.

There’s ice cream. Sunshine. Shops. Some dogs. A wedding. Bombs. Candles. Blood. Lightning. Sandwiches. Snipers. Looting. Gunshots. Babies. Actors. Azaleas. Famine. Fountains. Statues. Atrocities.

And tanks. (Probably).

Rory Mullarkey’s new play asks whether things really are getting worse. And if we care.


My Thoughts

This show tackles a serious subject with so much humour and borderline cheesy.

All the actors are all very good, the script is witty, the plot, fast-moving and the choreography and movement are fantastic. Overall the performance is amazing which makes up for some of the absurd and ludicrous happenings that spring up seemingly randomly.

The set, like i’d said before was gorgeous and very well designed,  all the explosions and other effects were done really well. There was even “real rain” which really impressed me ?

The plot twists and turns so quickly that my mouth dropped open in shock a few times,I also laughed out loud more than once throughout the performance.

The story highlights our growing immunity to terrible atrocities, for example characters more worried about their beloved ruined business than the welfare of their staff after an attack.

The only criticism I can make is that the “war” scene could have been much shorter , but other than this, I LOVED it.

If you enjoy a fast paced entertaining show with an important message, then you can’t go wrong with Pity.

I hope it returns to the London stage very soon.

Chanel ?

Chanel Williams


PITY Production at Royal Court Theatre – Copyright: Helen Murray

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