Shakespeare 400 and The Complete Walk


No surprises, of course, but there are plenty of events in celebration of the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death, 1616-2016. The hashtag is #Shakespeare400.

It’s hard to write about all of them, so I focus on just some which got my attention.


The RSC

First of all, the amazing Royal Shakespeare Company season in Stratford-Upon-Avon, London and other UK venues! See details on their website: https://www.rsc.org.uk/

They take to London some of the Stratford’s plays: https://www.rsc.org.uk/news/london-season-for-2016-announced

BARBICAN THEATRE

  • The Alchemist (2 September – 1 October) directed by Polly Findlay, featuring Ken Nwosu, Mark Lockyer and Siobhán McSweeney
  • Doctor Faustus (7 September – 1 October) directed by Maria Aberg with Sandy Grierson and Oliver Ryan sharing the roles of Faustus and Mephistophilis
  • Cymbeline (31 October – 22 December) directed by Melly Stillwith Gillian Bevan as the first woman to take on the role of Cymbeline for the RSC 
  • King Lear (10 November – 23 December) directed by Gregory Doran, with Antony Sher in the title role, David Troughton as Gloucester and Paapa Essiedu as Edmund

THEATRE ROYAL HAYMARKET

Love’s Labour’s Lost and Much Ado About Nothing (or Love’s Labour’s Won) transfer from Chichester Festival Theatre. Christopher Luscombe directs one acting company in both shows from 9 December 2016 to 18 March 2017.

And they bring to cinemas Henry V, Shakespeare Live!, Hamlet, Cymbeline and King Lear. See the schedule: https://www.rsc.org.uk/whats-on/in-cinemas

Shakespeare Live! from the RSC” will be also aired on BBC Two on Saturday 23 April at 8.30pm & in UK cinemas. Tickets:

Not forgetting, the wonderful “A Midsummer Night’s Dream – A Play For The Nation” still running in UK venues, before to return to Stratford June 15, 2016 – July 16, 2016 for the last run: http://www.dream2016.org.uk/ with the free event “Midsummer Music – Free music gigs curated by and featuring leading musicians from the West Midlands, responding to themes in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” https://www.rsc.org.uk/events/midsummer-music in June and July 2016.



Guildhall London

GUILDHALL’S ‘OPEN MIC’ SHAKESPEARE DAY

Simon Russell Beale and John Heffernan open Shakespeare’s event at on 10 May (via City Of London on Twitter).

Read the article: “Leading actors perform at Guildhall’s ‘open mic’ Shakespeare day ”  cityoflondon.gov.uk/leading-actors-perform-at-guildhalls-open-mic-shakespeare-day/

John Heffernan and actors Luke Thompson and Patsy Ferran viewed 1623 First Folio at the Guildhall on 1st April 2016, see a gallery: paimages.co.uk (more other actors viewed the book)



Shakespeare's Globe

THE GLOBE AND THE COMPLETE WALK

37 PLAYS | 37 FILMS | 37 SCREENS
Saturday 23 April – Sunday 24 April 2016
2.5 mile route from Westminster Bridge to Tower Bridge
Free event

This is a really fascinating event lucky people and tourists of London and Liverpool will be lucky to watch!

Every play had been filmed in real locations, where the Bard’s plays takes places!

http://www.shakespearesglobe.com/theatre/whats-on/special-events/the-complete-walk

The Globe wrote:

<<A free, interactive celebration of Shakespeare’s plays

Download The Complete Walk Map to plan your route (PDF version)

Over the spring weekend of 23 – 24 April 2016, the banks of the Thames will come alive with an extraordinary celebration as Shakespeare’s Globe invites the world to join The Complete Walk.

37 specially-made 10 minute films will be screened along the iconic 2.5 mile stretch between Westminster Bridge and Tower Bridge.

Each film explores one of Shakespeare’s plays and includes scenes shot in the locations Shakespeare imagined when he wrote them. Picture Cleopatra in front of the Pyramids, Shylock in Venice’s former Jewish Ghetto, Hamlet on the rocks of Elsinore and much more.

These scenes will be combined with extracts from the BFI’s iconic early silent films and our Globe On Screen filmed stage productions. Featuring a host of the world’s greatest actors, The Complete Walk is an accessible, interactive way to celebrate Shakespeare’s life, work and legacy, exactly 400 years on from his death.

The films will play continuously throughout the weekend enabling you to join us for the entire route or to dip in and out of your favourite plays as you stroll along the river.

A digital map will be available to download from this webpage in the days leading up to the event, or you can pick up a print copy from Shakespeare’s Globe over the weekend of 23 – 24 April.
JOIN THE CONVERSATION USING #THECOMPLETEWALK>>

Cast includes:

Nikki Amuka-Bird
Gemma Arterton is Rosaline in Love’s Labour’s Lost
Zawe Ashton
Hayley Atwell is in Cymbeline
Simon Russell Beale in Timon of Athens
Eve Best
Jessie Buckley
Tom Burke
David Burke
David Calder
Peter Capaldi
David Caves
Paul Chahidi
Kenneth Cranham
Marty Cruickshank
Philip Cumbus
David Dawson is Berowne in Love’s Labour’s Lost
Phil Davis
Bryan Dick told me on TwitterI’m playing Touchstone in As You Like It. We were the first to film.
Omid Djalili
Lindsay Duncan
Ray Fearon
Susie Fielding
Mel Giedroyc
Aidan Gillen
Boothby Graffoe
Trystan Gravelle
David Harewood filmed Othello in Cyprus, he will play the title’s character
Kevin Harvey
John Heffernan filmed Othello in Cyprus (will he play Iago?)
Clare Higgins
Douglas Hodge is Prospero in The Tempest, filmed in Bermuda
Alex Jennings
Toby Jones
Will Keen
Tamara Lawrence
John Light
Joel MacCormack
Sarah MacRae
Joseph Marcell
Neil Maskell
Eleanor Matsuura is Cleopatra in Anthony And Cleopatra
Joshua McGuire
Pauline McLynn
Ben Miles
Dean Nolan
James Norton
Jamie Parker
Katherine Parkinson as Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing
Nikesh Patel
Jonathan Pryce
Phoebe Pryce
Prasanna Puwanarajah
Ekow Quartey
Paul Ready
Sheila Reid
Olivia Ross
Dominic Rowan
Danny Sapani
Joanna Scanlan
Katy Stephens
Tom Stuart
Meera Syal
Matthew Tennyson
Michelle Terry
Luke Thompson
Alex Waldmann
Dominic West in Coriolanus, filmed at Ostia Antica in Rome
Samuel West as Benedict in Much Ado About Nothing
Olivia Williams
Ruth Wilson
Angus Wright as Henry IV in Henry IV Part 2
Ashley Zhangazha

Further casting to be announced.

I will update the list as soon as I find them out.

The plays

The Complete Walk plays

(from The Globe pdf above)

Great to see that eight plays have been filmed in Italian locations!



 WORLD

Some more events here: nytimes.com/2016/04/16


 I’m quite sure I will not be able to see everything, but I’ll do my best!

Some tickets have been booked and recorders set.

It’s going to be busy but quite enjoyable!

A Scena Aperta: an open day for historic theatres of Emilia Romagna


On 9 and 10 April, historic theatres of Emilia Romagna will be open with visits, shows, ballets and other events, in the name of Ariosto, Cervantes and Shakespeare!

(Region Emilia Romagna’s card for the event)


This year, in fact, the world celebrates three very important anniversaries:

  • on 1516, 500 years ago, Ludovico Ariosto published “L’Orlando Furioso” for the first time,
  • both William Shakespeare and Miguel de Cervantes died on 1616, 400 years ago.

The theatres which will take part to the event under the name of “A Scena Aperta” (At Open Scene) will make lectures, gigs and other things to commemorate the three writers.

Here an article, in Italian: http://ibc.regione.emilia-romagna.it/appuntamenti/2016/a-scena-aperta-incontri-nei-teatri-storici-dellemilia-romagna

Here, 107 pages of the beautiful historic theatres of Emilia Romagna with photos, in Italian: bbcc.ibc.regione.emilia-romagna.it teatri storici

The full programme, in Italian: https://issuu.com/istitutobeniculturali/docs/programma-finale


 

The IBC Region Emilia Romagna also launched an Instagram contest: people who will attend to the week-end, can share their pictures to describe their experience at one of the theatres, adding the hastag #ascenaaperta and tagging @ibcemiliaromagna (from the 9th to the 16th of April).

All the pictures will be reposted by the IBC and the best ones will be published on a brochure dedicated to the event and on the pages of the theatres on the IBC website. No pictures of children and minors allowed.


 

War Horse London is saying goodbye


So today there will be the last two performances for War Horse On Stage London.

It was Morphurgo’s decision to give it a rest, while tours are continuing around the world.

The English production will go on UK tour in 2017, with another cast, I suppose.

I was lucky enough to see it twice, in 2013 and 2015, both at the New London Theatre, but I still regret I haven’t seen all the different cast and productions. Would have been interesting. Let’s hope the National makes some recordings available in streaming or in their archive.

For some hours, old and current cast & creatives are tweeting their “goodbye” to the play.


(direct links)

WarHorseOnStage04

WarHorseOnStage

NT Bookshop1

NT Bookshop2

I confess: me, too!


james-backway

Dominic Hodson

Nada Zakula

Matthew Forbes

MalcolmRidley

JimmyGrimes

RobertEmms

Toby Olié

Alisdair Simpson

JackHolden

WarHorseOnStage02

Matthew Churcher

Markus Schabbing

WarHorseOnStage03

More will follow, as soon as I find them.

I’ve booked for two plays in Stratford!


I couldn’t resist, even if I’ve still to plan everything else and I’m not even sure if I can make it!

But tickets are selling fast and I was afraid to miss the occasion to see two plays by William Shakespeare in his birthplace the year of the celebration of Shakespeare 400 (400 years since his death), or to find none or bad seats last minute! Those I’ve bought in stalls seem quite good.

And I’ve never seen Cymbeline, so it was worth to book for it and King Lear by the Royal Shakespeare Company, with very interesting cast performing in both the plays!

It will be also a good occasion to visit Stratford-Upon-Avon for the first time. It looks gorgeous from the pictures!

plays

Cymbeline  http://www.rsc.org.uk/cymbeline/ 29 April – 15 October 2016 – hashtag #RSCCymbeline

King Lear  http://www.rsc.org.uk/king-lear/  20 August -15 October 2016 – hashtag #RSCKingLear



In protest: too few nominations for Oppenheimer!


I look back in… anger!

I can’t find an explanation on why Oppenheimer is not getting recognition from the theatreland: time goes by and some important awards on season 2015-2016, after just few months, seem to have forgotten how beautiful, gripping, entertaining and ridiculously well performed this play was, giving preference to latest productions and, even more irritating, to more famous – not necessarily more deserving – actors! Not talking about the fact that musicals seem to steal attention everywhere.

I’m so disappointed that any other nomination for other good plays I saw last year didn’t take me at all and I know is not nice from me, I should be happy for them and support them all, but I can’t help it!

I’m so so happy Catherine Steadman got her Olivier Awards nomination, of course! It’s amazing but I shouldn’t be surprised: she really deserved that!

I know there were little chances that any of the other supporting actors could get a nomination, they were all at the same good level, so it would be hard to choose between them, but they could get one as Ensemble, at least! How could be possible they didn’t?

No noms for Best New Play, Direction, Music, Sound, Set Design, Light Design either! I would give it a nom even for Choreography for the dynamic movements the cast made on stage, even if it wasn’t a ballet nor a musical!

And Oppenheimer got very good 4* and 5* reviews from many important magazines and blogs and it’s a fact that it was requested by the audience of London, after the run in Stratford-Upon-Avon and was sold-out in several dates. Both the Trailers made as adv for the two cities would deserve an award, too, expecially the first one in black&white.

Are theatrical awards’ juries blind or too posh to reward it, I wonder?

But, even more absurd and unfair, the wonderful John Heffernan has been ignored for his performance as Robert J. Oppenheimer! He’s a performer of great sensitivity and dedication, he got the play on his shoulders, I’ve never seen an actor so taken by a role like him at the end of the play! He totally blew me away! What an amazing actor!

Yesterday and even today, I read many tweets of other people disappointed by the lack of nominations for Oppenheimer and Heffernan, so I’m not the only one who’s gutted!

I know awards shouldn’t matter, as you can read in this conversation:

noms

and that those actors and creatives who worked in Oppenheimer will stay in the audience’s hearts forever (I suspect the cast itself had great fun doing it), and – again – I’m aware anyone can say that about their own favorite play or musical, but I’m still convinced this particular one should deserve awards like rain! I wouldn’t have seen this play four times in eight days, if I wasn’t totally taken by it! It never happened before and I will never regret it! You can read my review there. It’s a pity it wasn’t recorded for streaming or disks!

Anyway, at least let’s root for:

Oppenheimer poster

2016 nominees

Fingers crossed for both the nominations!

.

You can have your say writing me a comment below.

.

WelcomeTheatre: a new Italian platform for Theatre


March 2016: a new digital platform to watch Theatre will be launched!

Authors and productions can share their play and viewers can watch or buy it.

I’m proud it’s Italian, I wish it good luck!

I love to see theatre live, but it will be good for those who can’t attend to it, but would like to do so!

Their website is on, already, in Italian and English.

Take a look, I’ve just subscribed to it:

welcometheatre.com

logo-site-wt

(logo copyright of WelcomeTheatre)

What Bryan Dick is rehearsing


Nice, talented and – of course – handsome stage/screen actor Bryan Dick is working hard!

It started with a mysterious tweet on January 25, 2016:

First day of rehearsals. Nervous as always. What a weird job I have.

So I asked him “Hey! Can I ask what are you rehearsing? Don’t worry! You do well!

No answer.

But yesterday actress Kate Sisson liked some of our tweets regarding Bryan’s hair (here, here and here) the actor liked himself :D, so I took a look to her timeline and finally I found out one play he’s going to do, a musical actually!

@StilesandDrewe wrote: “# – book by Julian Fellowes starring dir. Rachel Kavanaugh 14 July-3 Sept

Half A Sixpence poster

I was so excited that I immediately tweeted: “Oh my, here what @bryandick is rehearsing!!! Congrats!” – here the link I found on Chichester Theatre’s website: cft.org.uk/whats-on/event/half-a-sixpence

And Bryan tweeted back: “Actually I’m rehearsing this But then I’ll be rehearsing that. And that makes me a lucky sod

Hobson Choice poster

So Bryan will be in two shows: Hobson’s Choice at the Theatre Royal Bath 25 February – 5 March 2016, also starring Martin Shaw and Christopher Timothy, and then Half A Sixpence 14th July – 3rd September 2016 (no further cast announced, yet).

I’m glad he’s doing lot of theatre! I wish I could see them both! But I would see the musical mostly!

I should tour UK in August and catch it in Chichester, together with plays in Stratford!

.

INFORMATION

Theatre Royal Bath @TheatreRBathHobson’s Choice by Harold Brighouse, directed by Jonathan Church, 25 February – 5 March 2016 – http://theatreroyal.org.uk/page/3028/Hobsons-Choice/1143Bryan Dick will play Willie Mossop. Cast list: http://www.whatsonstage.com/milton-keynes-theatre/shows/hobsons-choice_84632/cast/

Chichester Theatre @ChichesterFTHalf A Sixpence based on the H.G. Wells novel, fresh adaptation by Julian Fellowes,  directed by Rachel Kavanaugh, 14th July – 3rd September 2016 – https://www.cft.org.uk/whats-on/event/half-a-sixpence and http://stilesanddrewe.com/shows/halfasixpence/Bryan Dick will play Arthur Kipps.