Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre have chosen Harold Brighouse’s Zack as their Christmas offering. I went to see it on Monday and discovered there’s a reason why I had heard of Brighouse’s classic Hobson’s Choice but not this one.
I actually nodded off in the first half. Then in the interval I spotted no less than three local celebs – Jimi ‘Coronation Street’ Harkishin; Vicky ‘ex-Coronation Street’ Binns and Jason ‘concentrate on my family and tour commitments’ Manford.
All the excitement must have woken me up because I found myself conscious for the second half. It’s a mildly entertaining play. Quaint, inoffensive, sentimental stuff but a bit ho-hum. More bric-a-brac than antique.
Which left me wondering why, out of a virtually limitless choice of plays, this one was picked. OK it’s by a local playwright. But does the Royal Exchange audience not have the stomach for anything more challenging or exciting?