Sandy Pritchard-Gordon

Sandy Pritchard-Gordon
Theatre Blog

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Twelfth Night at The Globe

Despite feeling decidedly unwell during the first forty-five minutes of Twelfth Night at The Globe and therefore not really concentrating on what was happening on stage during that time, I still rave about the production.  No wonder Sonia Friedman is transferring this and Richard III to The Apollo Theatre in a few weeks time.  Not only because it gives the chance for many more to see the master, that is Mark Rylance at work, but also to watch Stephen Fry in his role of Malvolio.  After all, Mr. Fry’s last foray onto the stage culminated in him doing a runner after only one week, citing depression and doubt. No wonder he breathed a sigh of relief on Twitter after the first preview of this latest showing of Shakespeare's excellent comedy.

He is brave to tread the boards once more, especially playing a character who seems slightly unhinged at times and I applaud him for that and for the fact that he portrays the self important Malvolio really well indeed.  This is an extremely funny Twelfth Night, not least when Mr. Fry comes on stage absurdly attired in very bright yellow stockings, cross gartered and with a gurning grin in exchange for his earlier lugubrious expression.  Laughter continues throughout his disastrous wooing of his mistress, Olivia (the magnificent Rylance, who is reprising the role he last played ten years ago).  This is, again, an all male production but such is the expertise of the whole cast that one never believes there are no females gliding around the Globe stage.  And I do mean gliding!  Especially adept at portraying feminine wiles is Paul Chahidi as Maria, whilst Johnny Flynn’s Viola is excellent and the white faced Mark Rylance is never less than superb.  The vision of his Olivia doing three point turns whenever she has to sit down is worth the ticket price alone.  I found myself longing for him to come back on stage. Also worth a special mention are Samuel Barnett as Sebastian, Liam Brennan as Orsino and Colin Hurley as Sir Toby Belch.

Director Tim Carroll has once again produced a superb period-dress revival, which, as with his equally wonderful Richard III, culminates in the cast showing off their dancing skills.  Please note that  Mark Rylance can even dance like a woman!  Even though the play is over long, thanks in part to James Garnon’s Feste breaking into song more often than I remember, this is yet another play not to be missed.  So much so, I’ve just booked to see it again in the West End.  Fingers crossed I’m fit and well so as not to miss all the bits of business from the cast I failed to take on board this time round. 

No comments:

Post a Comment