Review: Oslo – Harold Pinter Theatre

On Friday 1st of December I managed to grab Rush Tickets to see ‘Oslo’ at the Harold Pinter Theatre.

After seeing nothing but great reviews and it being a sell out run when it was on at The National, I had to get my hands on a ticket.

Oslo won ‘Best Play’ at the Tony Awards this year and I can see why. The play is set in 1993 and tells a true story of two maverick Norwegian diplomats who arrange confidential and top secret meetings between the State of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organisation which lead to the signing of the 1993 Oslo Peace Accords.

If you aren’t that clued up on the history of Israel and Palestine, I would recommend having a quick read before you see the show as it’ll give you an understanding to the social context of the play and it’ll be a lot easier to follow. However you don’t need to be an expert as the performance is incredibly informative in itself.

The play is quite heavy and tense throughout which thankfully is broken up with a little humour – I’m not sure I could have sat through nearly 3 hours of intense discussions about politics no matter how interesting the subject was. Personally I thought the first act was lacking energy, there was just something missing that I couldn’t quite put my finger on but the slow pace could have easily been a choice by the director to show how stagnant and slow moving the discussions and meetings were; nevertheless the energy picked up in the second act suddenly and I felt a different vibe on stage.

If the idea of a play about the Israeli and Palestinian conflict doesn’t interest you, please just buy a ticket to see this to appreciate the outstanding work by the actors. I was in absolute awe of some of the performances, especially from Lydia Leonard (Mona) and Peter Polycarpou (Ahmed). They both held such presence on stage, truly captivating.

Overall, I’d rate Oslo 4* out of 5.

The performance is on until the 30th of December and tickets vary from £31.50-£87.50 but you can get Rush Tickets for £20 which are really good seats in the Dress Circle.

*Disclaimer- the photo above is owned by The National Theatre and is not my own*

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