The Two Gentlemen of Verona (2014): Royal Shakespeare Company, Royal Shakespeare Theatre
PrThe Two Gentlemen of Verona (2014)
PRINCIPAL CAST: Mark Arends (Proteus); Pearl Chanda (Julia); Sarah MacRae (Silvia); Michael Marcus (Valentine).
This production ran from 12 July - 4 September 2014.
"We enter the theatre to discover an al fresco Veronese cafe seething with extra-textual activity." ~ Michael Billington, The Guardian, 24 July 2014, in Theatre Record 2014, Issue 15
"It all works a treat in Simon Godwin's production, niftily designed by Paul Wills and set in modern Italy, with a dolce vita buzz of scooters, nightclubs and open air cafes." ~ Charles Spencer, Daily Telegraph, 24 July 2014, in Theatre Record 2014, Issue 15
"Simon Godwin's production, decked out with heart-shaped balloons, evokes a romantic image of Italy as cheesy as a big pizza, and scrapes together just enough persuasive boyish and girlish charm to keep us on side." ~ Maxie Szalwinska, Sunday Times, 27 July 2014, in Theatre Record 2014, Issue 15
"Simon Godwin makes his RSC directorial debut by mimicking the approach that serves him as an associate at the Royal Court: he treats the play as if it were new writing. It's a perfectly sensible approach...in theory. In practise, four centuries' worth of changing sensibilities keep getting in the way. Principally, you don't make the flowery language clear and comprehensible by treating it as contemporary naturalistic prose. Modern pacing and cadences can on the contrary render it even less intelligible, especially when you have cast your entangled lovers from actors who are appropriately young but as yet lack the tricks to cheat in such matters. Compare Michael Marcus as Valentine with Jonny Glynn as his beloved Silvia's father who refuses his suit: Marcus understands his lines, but delivering them as if they were written by April de Angelis doesn't get that understanding across; whereas Glynn knows to insert enough actorly manner to retain the music of the verse and thus its rythyms of meaning, yet not enough to sound artificial." ~ Ian Shuttleworth, Financial Times, 24 July 2014, in Theatre Record 2014, Issue 15