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30 July 2013 @ 04:28 pm
Twelfth Night - A Review  
Twelfth Night - where to start with thee?

This play is presented with the same cast as Hamlet but includes a different director - Dennis Garnhum. Its upbeat sense of mischief is infectious, especially on the eve of the Celebration of Light with a veritable armada trailing on land and sea beyond the stage door.

I'm not quite sure how Twelfth Night would have played out in the Elizabethan era with every role inhabited by a man (confusing as hell I suspect!) but with this cast it was a riot of fun. Garnhum keeps it light and deliberately easy to follow so that we can enjoy the characters' increasing folly upon the stage. Props also to matching the twins Viola and Sebastian, they have more than a passing resemblance to each other, at least from a distance.

Malvolio (played by Allan Zinyk) was very much in danger of stealing the show. The poor fellow was doing his job only to have havoc rained down on him by some unfriendly colleagues. Those yellow stockings... I was almost batting for him to win over Olivia.Taken by the heart, his self inflicted descent into madness is predictable, tragic and cruelly hilarious. We are left to imagine what sort of smiting he might come up with for the others. (The steam room scene was epic).

Olivia (Jennifer Lines) had some of the finest comedic moments, bringing the house down several times with a single word. She really does reflect the innocent teen in us all who frets and fawns over the faintest tremble in a potential suitor. She's entirely endearing and her success is nothing if not promising for all the Romeos and Juliets out there looking for a happier outcome.

As you would expect, it was the wisest character of them all, The Fool (Jonathon Young), who rightly stole the show. We've come to expect great things from the man who struts the stage as though born from its curtains but singing was quite the surprise! In all he leads more than half a dozen songs, often without the help of music. He is not your typical voice, rather something aloof - sorrowful hope is about all I can think to describe it with. The music carries the show all the way through to its end, fitting from a work that offers us the following;

'If music be the food of love - play on!'

The physicality of the Fool's role is demanding and there were some neat little stunts in there that earned applause. (Seriously, how'd he get inside that garden chair with snapping himself into it like a zip-lock sandwich bag?) It really is his wit that binds the others together. Even when he's not speaking, the Fool's there keeping a close eye on this mad world. Shakespeare loved madness in all its forms and so too the dichotomy of the Fool. Whether in tragedy (Hamlet) or comedy (Twelfth Night), he is forever playing with the fragile edges of our sanity and Bard on the Beach makes it a real joy to watch.

There's still plenty of time left in the season to head down (up?) there and catch these performances. If you have the chance, I recommend the fireworks night! It reminded me of New Year's Eve at Sydney Harbour except with more comfortable chairs and less oversized insects from the Triassic trying to kill you.

It was definitely worth flying to Canada. Thank you for a wonderful show.

From Australia, with love.
Feeling...: amusedamused
The Nikola Tesla Protégé: Nikola: Scored!tardis_mafia on July 30th, 2013 04:33 pm (UTC)
Mmmm... Jonathon singing. I so wish I could've been there, but I'm glad you had a great time.

Now get your ass to our RP! XD
nikolat3slanikolat3sla on July 30th, 2013 06:05 pm (UTC)
Lol i did that first!
The Nikola Tesla Protégé: Nikola/Rayne: Smilestardis_mafia on July 31st, 2013 11:43 am (UTC)
I see that! :D And it's been so long I almost forgot where we were in all 5 threads.
nikolat3sla: been a bad vampnikolat3sla on August 1st, 2013 08:16 am (UTC)
I know! sorry about that! silly internet - also, mildly distracted by canada lol!
The Nikola Tesla Protégé: Nikola: Brighttardis_mafia on August 1st, 2013 10:59 am (UTC)
It's all good. Though I may have to go back a few threads and remember what exactly was going on. LOL