Tuesday, June 20, 2006


"Why, there they are both, baked in that pie;
Whereof their mother daintily hath fed,
Eating the flesh that she herself hath bred.
'Tis true, 'tis true; witness my knife's sharp point."

This was a beautiful production of this terrifying play - although the blood was red ribbon, the deaths and mutilations were more shocking than a simulated version of the real thing. Even Nicholas de Jongh in the Evening Standard, who rarely finds much pleasure in Stratford, praised the production.

"The stage, possessed by atrocity, never ceases to look eerily and ironically beautiful, thanks to Tsukasa Nakagoshi's amazing design, which encloses it in a white frame, dominated by a white wolf and the infants she suckled. When Lavinia's rape and off-stage mutilarion and the murder of her husband Bassanio are effected in a dream-struck, dazzling white woodland of unnatural beauty where mushroom-like plants grow as tall as humans, the effect is grotesquely disturbing."

N de J slightly marred his enthusiasm by beginning his piece "At last the Royal Shakespeare Company's Complete Works takes off" - did he miss the Dream and Antony and Cleopatra and Much Ado? - but even grudging praise is, I suppose, to be welcomed.

Personal Star Rating [out of five]****


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