Old Times

Director Michael Kahn and his cast give a cool, clean, faithful reading of Harold Pinter’s enigmatic exploration of memory and friendship. The intermission changeover of the set from the sitting room to the bedroom, specified in the script, serves to disrupt the momentum of the piece; the perfunctory second act (30 minutes, if that) feels as if the narrative arc has fallen off the table.

But this mounting, admirably, makes the story both more transparent and more opaque to me compared to the last time I saw a production. (It couldn’t have anything to do with the intervening twenty years, could it?) Steven Culp’s amiable Deeley is a bit shambling; Tracy Lynn Middendorf is languid in pink satin as Kate; Holly Twyford’s brittle Anna makes us wish that she had known as much fun as a young girl in London as she claims to have.

  • Old Times, by Harold Pinter, directed by Michael Kahn, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Washington