"the gross and scope of my opinion ..." Hamlet I,1.
Wednesday, October 26, 2016
THE SCORNFUL LADY
Not Dead at Gray's Inn
pretty hall, this … “ A
welcome return visit to the historic Gray's Inn, after this summer's
stylish Comedy of Errors.
Beaumont and Fletcher was first published 400 years ago. It's almost
entirely forgotten now, but for many years it was a staple of the
comedy repertoire; Sam Pepys was a fan; he saw it several times, both
with an actress in the title role and in the original version with a
cast of boys.
done by one of the very profession children's companies, who boasted
among their number specialists in old men [and women], young lovers
and everything in between.
was also a favourite with amateur actors, so it was appropriate that
this staged reading featured members of the Inn embedded in the cast
of players from Shakespeare's Globe. Most
notably High Court Judge Sir Michael Burton relishing the role of
Abigail - “sweet bratch”, ageing and lecherous maidservant to the
Lady in question [Emma Denly]. Sighing, chewing the cud – a posset
– he won
over his audience with practised ease. As did the “talking
nightcap”, Sir Roger the curate [Roger Eastman].
wenches, merry companions, Savil the Steward [kin to Malvolio], the
Loveless brothers [Alex Mugnaioni and James Askill], a cross-dressing suitor [Robert Heard], a trio of hangers-on – a rich cast of characters in a
complex, and rather long, intrigue of misogyny, deceit and sexual
by Read Not Dead regular James Wallace.