World Premiere

The Mighty Walzer

by Howard Jacobson, adapted for the stage by Simon Bent
Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester, 2016

'Jacobson's ping pong comedy is a smash on stage'
The Guardian ****

'Ping­pong: it’s hardly the sexiest of sports. Yet it becomes a lesson in love and the game of life itself in Howard Jacobson’s 1999 semi­autobiographical novel, adapted for the stage by Simon Bent... There’s a full­ flavoured wit and luminous humanity in the writing. And Jonathan Humphreys’s production, with an absorbing lead performance from Elliot Levey, adroitly tempers nostalgic warmth with pensive melancholy....The domestic dynamics are painfully funny....Bent’s adaptation leaves us with a potent sense that growing up is a lifelong process. Bittersweet, tender and wise.'
The Times ****

'I'm glad that writer Howard Jacobson lent us his story of The Mighty Walzer and even happier that this adaptation by Simon Bent has turned a funny novel into an even funnier play...We need beautiful stories like The Mighty Walzer to help transform fear and loathing into chortles and snorts, to help us remember that life goes on regardless.' ****

'A messily authentic portrait of adolescence full of fouls, missed shots and the odd moment of glory.'
Daily Telegraph ****

'This joyful production is superbly directed by Jonathan Humphreys'
Manchester Evening News ****

Cast: Elliot Levy, Jonathan Tafler, Tracy Ann Oberman, James Parris, Daniel Abelson, Anne Marcuson, Ilan Goodman, Lily Sacofky, David Crellin, Joe Coen

Designer: James Cotterill
Lighting Designer: Lizzie Powell
Sound and Music: Ben and Max Ringham
Movement: Aline David