The production of Antony and Cleopatra recently performed at the Liverpool Playhouse (directed by Janet Suzman) was clearly a good solid safe production of the play. It felt that the time had been spent on speaking the verse and thinking about blocking scenes, and I felt there were very few flaws.
There were some very nice touches. As they take their seats, the audience see the stage through a gauze curtain. We are introduced to Egypt in the middle of a celebration. Cleopatra is masked and she turns to the audience to reveal herself. We find Antony in a drunken stupor at her feet. The production was able to show us a Cleopatra at play and at work. When at work Cleopatra puts her glasses on and sat at a table signing documents. There are also moments of humour such as Cleopatra’s attendants teasing Mardian as he is not very good at playing his music.
As much as I enjoyed the production, I didn’t leave the theatre feeling exhilarated, just content. I know that considering the popularity of the Liverpool production and the great reviews that it might be controversial to say this, but I felt that the RSC production of Antony and Cleopatra took some risks and they paid off in the end. I know the RSC production has been a little slow to warm up in previews, but it has turned out to be thought provoking and exciting.
Reviews and Previews
- Janet Suzman interview for Antony and Cleopatra…
- Kim Cattrall: absolutely fabulous | Culture | T…
- Antony and Cleopatra Liverpool
- Antony and Cleopatra – review
- FT.com / Arts / Theatre & Dance – Antony and Cl…
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