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Customer Review

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4.0 out of 5 stars Private Lives, Full cast BBC audio recording - A glimpse of another era, 22 April 2010
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This review is from: Private Lives (Classic Radio Theatre) (Audio CD)
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In this rather entertaining comedy of manners from the pen of the Master, Noel Coward, four interesting (yet somehow dull...) characters face the consequences of a chance meeting.

Elyot and Sybil, and Victor and Amanda are two couples honeymooning on the Riviera, but once upon a time Elyot and Amanda were married. They meet by chance, and realise that there is still an attraction. Will they run away together, or stay loyal to their new spouses?

This rather nicely observed comedy, written in 1930 and recorded in 1975, brings to life all the strains on the various relationships between the four honeymooners. For those who like acid putdowns and rapid repartee from the mid war era, this will provide much entertainment.

Paul Schofield and Patricia Routledge shine as the ex spouses, Elyot and Amanda, two interesting yet fundamentally unlikeable characters. Carole Boyd and John Rye, as Victor and Sybil, have less to do, yet manage to portray the hurt and somewhat wet new spouses effectively, really managing to shine on the final scene where they really start to strike sparks off each other.

There are two discs, with a total runtime of 90 minutes, in a single size jewel case. There is a short essay about Coward and some cursory recording notes. A decent package, well worth a listen for fans of this more dated style of comedy.
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