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Review | Life of Pi | West End, London

Review | Life of Pi | West End, London

I took 3 teenage boys into the West End to watch a fantastic play, of a book I know is on most schools reading lists- The Life of Pi. It was good to go into Central London again after avoiding it for most of the Christmas period, and it is heartening to see the West End bustling and still alive in January. It’s a perfect half term treat.

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If there is a good reason to come back into Central London again the theatres are definitely it. The quality of the productions currently on are better than ever and The Life of Pi was an absolute smash hit for 3 especially lively 14 year olds, Joseph, Sam and Ivan.

It is an amazing and inventive production that is so clever in its use of stage, puppetry and cast. There were gasps throughout as the stage turns and a boat rises from the blank stage, clever lighting created imagery water and waves that smoothly transform back into a hospital tiles floor. Not to give too much away but the stage was remarkable, with some stunning surprises from what seems to be a floor cut into the shape of a large boat, rivets included. The boat sinking managed to make us feel seasick! The puppeteers and  stunning animals were the stars of the show. The hyena was so menacing, the Zebra was so big and so quick! The way that tiger moved was exceptional. As Sam said “ they gave Richard Parker (the tiger) his own character and emotions. I can’t believe how he looked sad and scared just by twitches and movements” 

Review | Life of Pi | West End, London

The cast worked so well together. The ensemble moved so well, an almost balletic change of scenes with props and puppets that completely engaged all of us throughout the whole play. Ivan said “I didn’t even know where to look it all was so good.” But of course the stand out performance was Pi himself. Hiran Abeysekera so was so likeable as Pi and owned the role and the stage, even with that stunning Bengal tiger!

I would absolutely recommend this production of The Life of Pi for all older children. The discussions that we had after the play ended continued all the way though our journey home- it’s themes of reality and story telling- Pi’s choice in how to express his trauma- how the animals represented the people in the boat- what each thought of the animals- what their favourite bits were- how they made that bit work and how did that happen? Their English teachers would be proud! It will be an experience that will stay with all three boys for a long time and I was grateful I was able to take them out to the theatre for a fantastic night out. 


Charing Cross Road




Box Office: 0844 482 5151

Ticket prices start from £15.00



From Monday 15 November 2021

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