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Much Ado About Nothing at the Old Vic

September 30, 2013

Mark Rylance‘s production of MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING at the Old Vic is a much ado about nothing less than a complete turkey. “Turkey” being an informal mostly North American term meaning a total FLOP. This play was excruciatingly embarrassing and tedious in the extreme. Poor 76 year old Vanessa Redgrave and 82 year old James Earl Jones are hopelessly miscast and are surrounded by what seems like a general rabble as people shuffle on and off the stage. The American accents did not help at all removing good Shakespearian English diction with a monotone drawl.

Possibly the most boring set ever in the history of the Old Vic with Mark Rylance’s annoying habit of insisting that the house lights are left on gave the impression to me that we were still in the rehearsal room. If the actors had been walking around with scripts in their hands I might have been more forgiving. I read in the programme that Mark Rylance allowed the production to build without distraction around the relationship between these two grandees of the theatre. Unfortunately there is no relationship to speak of and this play disappears into a vacuum of total tedium. Painful to watch.

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From → Theatre

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