Review | Abigail’s Party | Manchester’s Opera House

Review | Abigail’s Party | Manchester’s Opera House


Mike Leigh’s writing has been enjoyed for over 40 years, and Sarah Esdaile’s current UK tour production is stylish, comical and so easy to watch and enjoy.

The almost dollhouse set, designed by Janet Bird, opens up to reveal the brown, leather front 70s living room and invites the audience into the ever so eventful evening.

While teenage Abigail is having a party, the adults get to enjoy some fun too. Beverly and Laurence host a little soiree for the brand new neighbours, Angela and Tony. Little do they know, that all hell is about to break loose.

Jodie Prenger is comedy gold as Essex housewife Beverly. Swanning around the room, Prenger is sassy, garish and the most entertaining host that you could ask for at a party – “Fancy a drink, Tone?”

Daniel Casey makes a hilarious Laurence, an estate agent with interest for classic art. Throughout the show, you see Casey getting more and more riled up, all while worrying about getting heartburn.

The short, single line answers from the mysterious Tony, played by Calum Callaghan, is entertaining, in comparison to the overly chatty Angela, performed by Vicky Burns.

Another stand out performance is from the airy and maybe not quite all there Sue played incredibly by Rose Keegan. Coming out with some of the best lines, her swoopy and vacant voice is comical gold.

The show is a crowd pleaser, and I was holding back tears of laughter throughout. Even when I thought the show couldn’t get any better, Mike Leigh’s perfect dialogue cracks me up again.

A production I could easily watch night after night.

On at Manchester’s Opera House until the 13th of April, tickets and information can be found on their website.


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