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Posts Tagged ‘Dunsinane’

DUNSINANE –  I quote what Ingrid wrote.  “We watched Dunsinane today in Stratford, at the matinee: What a fantastic performance! It was tremendous, powerful, playing incredible tricks with one’s mind. Brian Ferguson, the Malcom/Karzai who came over as the true realist, quite lovable and just a little despicable, Jonny Phillips as the noble warrior, so naive and yet so cruel, Tom Gill, little Sojo who was told…, and the wonderful Siobhan Redmond as Gruach, she had me in tears at the end.“ What a production! Bravo! Thank you National Theatre of Scotland! Thank you RSC for putting it on at The Swan. I enjoyed it again. Tonight is the last performance in Stratford. Congratulations to all the National Theatre of Scotland team and good luck for the next performances of the play. Thought provoking and wonderful acting.

SCOTT HANDY TALK FOR THE RSC FRIENDS –  It was a privilege to be present, when Scott Handy gave a mesmerizing talk to the RSC Friends. Everyone there appeared impressed by his sincerity and relevant comments including how actors bring the written lines to life. We should thank him for taking time to talk to us despite his busy schedule. Scott is such an intelligent, pleasant, unassuming gentleman and a credit to his profession.  And thank you Jane for your pertinent questions –so good a host and for organising the Event along with Penny who also deserves our thanks.

UNWRAPPED AND SCRIPT- IN – HAND PERFORMANCES – We have been enjoying going to the various Unwrapped Events that have been staged at the RSC and also the script in hand readings. I am looking forward to Saturday which starts with Unwrapped Cardenio at 10.30, followed by a weekend created by Mark Ravenhill – script in hand readings Poppy at 2pm (a musical set during the 19th century Opium Wars) and Fashion at 7pm (a satire re political spin as an advertising tycoon bids for the job of re-modelling the Tories in 1987).

My goodness we are being spoilt for choice.

by  David Stevens

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 Cardenio: a challenge‏ for you

Last Saturday, I attended a very interesting “conversation” between, the Friends’ own, Greg Doran and Tiffany Stern and chaired by Paul Edmondson at the Shakespeare Centre about “Cardenio”. Fortunately, it was recorded, so you can listen to the first half at http://bloggingshakespeare.com/listen-to-cardenio-in-conversation.  During that conversation, Greg admitted he had used two lines from Hamlet that none of the critics had spotted, so my challenge is: can anyone out there find it? Get checking!

News on Geoffrey

Fans of Geoffrey Streatfeild are in for a double treat next week as he’s appearing in TWO Afternoon Plays on Radio 4 at 2.15pm. The first, “Success Story” on Monday 20th, is about an actor on the brink of stardom when his past catches up with him. In the second, “Playing for his Life”, Geoff is a German tennis player who offends Hitler. Make sure you tune in!

 Happenings at Hampstead Theatre‏

Not content with putting on 3 new works and preparing for a season in New York, the old RSC company are also performing 4 plays in the Michael Frayn Space, in their spare time, and with a little help from some friends such as David Fielder, Martin Turner and Marjorie Yates. Sadly, for most of us, the plays (Mojo, The Bullet, The Price (Miller) and Ahaseverus) are only available for an invited audience but, I have seen one play, in my capacity as an usher, and I’m pleased to say that the production values and performances are to the RSC’s normal high standards. Shame that more people can’t enjoy them!

by Geraldine Caulfield

BUT – Happily you can see Dunsinane at the Swan Theatre, Stratford upon Avon now until July 2nd. First performed at Hampstead last year – I went to see it last night and thought it was very good – well written, thought provoking, great casting and music and funny which was unexpected. I highly recommend it.

by Jane Cromack

And just to add..

 

Some thoughts on DUNSINANE…..The opening night was marvellous. There was a great script from David Greig, super direction by Roxana Silbert and what a cast and set. Well done in particular Siobhan Redmond and Jonny Phillips. Congratulations to the National Theatre of Scotland

 

Enjoyed a chat with Tony-Boyd-Williams after the show about the merits of the play and how true it was of events happening today. I slept well but woke up, at 6.am, thinking about Dunsinane. I picked up the wonderful programme which includes the script and re-examined it. This is clearly a play that should be seen by all modern politicians and make them think hard about certain situations they place our commanding officers when involved in a country other than their own. If only one or two took note of this perhaps they would not be so prepared to make questionable and hasty decisions. It was clear to me that Jonny Phillips, as Siward, had given considerable thought regarding the role and he captured the part very adeptly and showing  the strengths and failings of even the most competent of COs when receiving instructions from weaker, greedier and ambitious superiors.

 

The horror and ethics of fighting a war that is not your own concern, in an alien country, is as topical today as it was then. Scotland? Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya? Where next?

 

There was humour, which was superb and typical of people placed in impossible situations, and the dialogue between Malcolm (portrayed rather well by Brian Ferguson) on the Throne ,at the Great Hall, in Dunsinane very early in the play was both humorous and thought provoking. Indeed this is a play that you will think about for many days after.  If you have not booked to see this production, you should.

 

by David Stevens

 

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In the early days of the RSC, a 16 year old like myself had to choose whether to spend saved  money for theatre outings on either tickets for Stratford or the company’s New Work in London. Invariably, Shakespeare won but I was able to keep in touch with New Work such as AFORE NIGHT COME, EVERYTHING IN THE GARDEN, NIL CARBORUNDUM, EH? and THE REPRESENTATIVE by reading  and enjoying the published play texts which were in print pretty quickly.

The RSC has always made the texts of New Work available and at reasonable prices. For this we should be most grateful. However, some quite amazing bargains are currently available at the excellent RSC shop at The Courtyard. Those of us who have not been able to catch the recent new work in London and Newcastle may keep in touch with it by purchasing  texts of THE CORDELIA DREAM, THE GODS WEEP, DUNSINANE and A TENDER THING at the amazing and fantastic bargain price of 50 pence a copy! 

In addition, there are copies at the same price of the texts for BREAKFAST WITH MUGABE and ARABIAN NIGHTS, thus enabling all who saw these excellent productions in Stratford to relive them in a special way. 

I’ll end this blog now so you don’t have to read any more but may hasten to The Courtyard whilst copies of the above are still available!

Tony Boyd-Williams

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Dunsinane

I was very lucky to see a preview of “Dunsinane” this Saturday at the Hampstead Theatre. The play takes up the story of “Macbeth” almost at the point where Shakespeare finished but with some major differences in the story, for example, Lady M lives, and it focuses on what the “good” Englishman Siward does in Scotland after Macbeth’s death.

The piece is beautifully written (David Greig) and effortlessly blends humour with violence and the darkest aspects of human behaviour to describe what happens when, even with the best of motives, cultures collide. Sound familiar? The production is full of energy and vigour, as the actors charge through the audience, and yet the story is told with absolute clarity and purpose.

Book early, book often. This is a show you MUST see.

by Geraldine Caulfield, London

Book online at www.hampsteadtheatre.com or call 020 7722 9301

For more info look at www.rsc.org.uk/content/8770.aspx

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