Comedy of Errors (1983): Royal Shakespeare Company, Royal Shakespeare Theatre
PrComedy of Errors (1983)
PRINCIPAL CAST: Jane Booker (Luciana); Henry Goodman (Dromio of Ephesus); Paul Greenwood (Antipholus of Syracuse); Peter McEnery (Antipholus of Ephesus); Richard O'Callaghan (Dromio of Syracuse); Zoe Wanamaker (Adriana).
This production had its original press night on 9 August 1983 in Stratford-upon-Avon.
"Here we have a mishmash of funny turns. Mostly drawn from vaudeville but erupting now and then as musical comedy or light operetta or a clown show, the revival's source of humour (apart from the author's) are fascinating to trace. The trouble is that the range of comedy allusion is distracting...The heavily painted faces, the grotesquely modern costumes, the red-nosed Dromios and the blue-faced brothers Antipholus - these are almost conventional. But the musical and scenic treatment and the alternation of tone, from music hall to musical comedy or saucy postcard frolics, is too hap-hazard for our laughter to flow easily. The fun comes in fits and starts and from clashes of style." ~ Eric Shorter, "Shakespeare's funny turns", Daily Telegraph, 11 August 1983
"Ultz, whose grotesque Restoration costumes for The Twin Rivals had such superbly satirical effect, has even more fun here, knowing that the whole thing is nonsense. The entire cast wear colour make-up, usually white apart from the Antipholuses, whose blue faces mark their affinity, and combine appropriate twentieth-century dress (city suits and the Financial Times for he Ephesus merchants) with maybe a clownish hat or Little Tich's boots." ~ Anthony Masters, "Going all the way for laughs", The Times, 11 August 1983