Danielle enjoyed Life’s A Beach. She is, however, quite possibly the worst member of the audience ever to have taken a seat up at Hull Truck. Her persistent rasping cough annoyed many a theatreogoer, who fought back by tutting. The constant intake of fluids to shut her up played havoc with her bladder – halfway through the first act, at a particularly quiet moment, she decided to head to the toilet and exited with all the grace of an elephant (some achievement for one so thin). A similar re-entry made the people sat behind and next to us have a rethink at the interval. Save for a deaf couple who couldn’t care less, they moved en masse to those oft-empty seats at the side. Danielle continued to bark, and so popular was her previous toilet soiree that she repeated the exercise.
Her return, for me, was the highlight of the evening. She tripped up the stairs and made a god-awful racket, almost falling into the laps of the deaf people. One elderly woman was heard gasping. During the half-time press drinks freebie, noticed Phil, the Teletext reviewer, staring daggers at Danielle, no doubt due to the cough. Bloody cynical critics, they spend too much time in the theatre and should stay in more. For once, I felt sympathy for all those people that leave their phones on and unwrap boiled sweets for two hours. It strikes me that, if the dialogue being muttered on stage fails to hold your attention, then there’s something wrong with the play and it’s not the fault of the coughing child in seat C20. Real life isn’t carried out in hushed tones, with people ssssshhhhing all the time. We have to make sense of it through all kinds of racket. Beach wasn’t great but had a few redeeming moments and shall emphasise the positives in my review. Wonder if the other reviewers will be so kind?