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Cymbeline


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#1 coated peanuts

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Posted 31 May 2007 - 10:30 PM

It's wonderful. Stylish, well-acted, amazingly clear for such a convoluted plot and just plain fabulous. I'm wondering whether I can afford another ticket...

#2 Backdrifter

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Posted 01 June 2007 - 07:53 AM

I'm glad I'm hearing such good things about it, I'm really looking forward to it now - seeing it next week.

What did you think of the reconfiguration? I saw Three Sisters and found the layout interesting, and always enjoy going into a usually familiar auditorium that's been rejigged, although I have to confess that apart from greater intimacy I couldn't see why it had been done for these 2 productions.
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#3 Duncan

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Posted 01 June 2007 - 08:01 AM

Saw it. Loved it. Particularly liked the 'interesting feature' of the production!

#4 coated peanuts

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Posted 01 June 2007 - 08:28 AM

QUOTE(Duncan @ Jun 1 2007, 09:01 AM) View Post
Saw it. Loved it. Particularly liked the 'interesting feature' of the production!

If that is the same feature I'm thinking about, it cracked me up no end.

I was wondering why they had reconfigured the space as they did, seeing that you could fit a lot more people in otherwise. I did think that the sightlines looked better with the higher seating. The first row was practially on stage and I thought it created the same immediacy you can get in small fringe venues, so I enjoyed that. Sometimes I get all revved up about a play straight after I have seen it and then it fades, but this morning I woke up thinking ' How cool was Cymbeline last night'.

#5 Jan Brock

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Posted 01 June 2007 - 01:00 PM

QUOTE(coated peanuts @ Jun 1 2007, 09:28 AM) View Post
If that is the same feature I'm thinking about, it cracked me up no end.

I was wondering why they had reconfigured the space as they did, seeing that you could fit a lot more people in otherwise. I did think that the sightlines looked better with the higher seating. The first row was practially on stage and I thought it created the same immediacy you can get in small fringe venues, so I enjoyed that. Sometimes I get all revved up about a play straight after I have seen it and then it fades, but this morning I woke up thinking ' How cool was Cymbeline last night'.


Well listen, I am seeing this and looking forward to it, but this "reconfiguration" thing irritates me - they did it for their production there last year too. I think it shows a lack of confidence - they don't think they can get a reasonable audience for their work so they reduce the capacity dramatically. BUT, Cheek by Jowl are the resident company there - they should set their sights higher - Deborah Warner has shown you can fill the main house with Shakespeare and Cheek by Jowl should be equally ambitious.

#6 coated peanuts

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Posted 01 June 2007 - 01:16 PM

QUOTE(Jan Brock @ Jun 1 2007, 02:00 PM) View Post
Deborah Warner has shown you can fill the main house with Shakespeare and Cheek by Jowl should be equally ambitious.

Yup, they've created a great piece and should be wanting to show it off to as many people as possible. Also, the seats I was on were very wobbly, which meant everyone sitting in that small section had to sit very still unless they wanted a few other people to sway gently in their seats. If they reconfigure they should make sure that it has a solid feel to it.

#7 Backdrifter

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Posted 01 June 2007 - 01:21 PM

I like a reconfiguration, as I said I'm always intrigued seeing a familiar space reshaped but it has to have some artistic rationale. I agree, they should be confident enough to fill that theatre in its normal format. (However, a quick glance at the seating plan earlier showed there are still quite a few unsold seats - which might change as the good notices filter through).

At Three Sisters I did notice a bit of 'give' in the row when anyone shifted position.
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#8 Backdrifter

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Posted 08 June 2007 - 07:45 AM

Saw it last night and loved it  - one of the best Shakespears I've seen. Played with such clarity. Very effective sparse staging and excellent lighting. Warning - most of the 2nd act is quite smokey with a brazier on stage, even after it's removed. It didn't bother me too much but you might like to be forewarned. If the 'feature' mentioned above is the thing I'm thinking, it could have been ghastly but it was so well played it worked and I found it very funny. I also liked the incongruity of the jolly waltz music on an apparently endless loop during the climactic scenes. It was still in my head when I got on the train at Waterloo!

Even after good notices, there are still wide-open spaces in this already shrunk-down auditorium - a real shame, more people should be seeing this.

Jan, you said you were seeing it. Look at what Imogen wears in most of her early scenes and tell me if a certain director doesn't spring to mind!
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#9 Jan Brock

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Posted 08 June 2007 - 08:51 AM

QUOTE(Backdrifter @ Jun 8 2007, 08:45 AM) View Post
Saw it last night and loved it  - one of the best Shakespears I've seen. Played with such clarity. Very effective sparse staging and excellent lighting. Warning - most of the 2nd act is quite smokey with a brazier on stage, even after it's removed. It didn't bother me too much but you might like to be forewarned. If the 'feature' mentioned above is the thing I'm thinking, it could have been ghastly but it was so well played it worked and I found it very funny. I also liked the incongruity of the jolly waltz music on an apparently endless loop during the climactic scenes. It was still in my head when I got on the train at Waterloo!

Even after good notices, there are still wide-open spaces in this already shrunk-down auditorium - a real shame, more people should be seeing this.

Jan, you said you were seeing it. Look at what Imogen wears in most of her early scenes and tell me if a certain director doesn't spring to mind!


Well, yes, but best not to comment.

I thought the production was a little slow in the first half, but improved markedly towards the end. One small point, I thought the stage area was too large for the sparse staging - would have been better in the Pit.

#10 Backdrifter

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Posted 08 June 2007 - 01:55 PM

I mulled over the floorspace issue. I take your point and it'd have been interesting to see how it played in the Pit but I didn't mind it.

I loved the long periods of silence during the bedroom scene.
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