Thrilling. I went somewhat apprehensively after hearing of poor reviews from Liverpool, where it started out, so what a relief it was to be blown away by this production. As someone else has said here it is a very clear production. Postlethwaite is a convincing and powerful Lear with wonderful moments of comic genius, whilst Tobias Menzies is a deeply affecting and memorable Edgar/Poor Tom. The daughters too were all finely portrayed and supported ably by the rest of the cast. I have seen a few Lears in my time, McKellan more recently, but this one stands out and will remain, I am sure, a bench mark for future productions. - rds
18 Mar 09
Loved it!! Absolutely loved it!! Talk about being part of the action, it was a very intimate and powerful experience. - Chris
17 Mar 09
Well, this much maligned production may not be a classic one, but it is very good. It seems that many of the 'gimmicks' the critics complained about at its Liverpool opening have been lost and what's left is a very clear reading of the play with some fine performances. I liked Postlethwaite's Lear, but I was also very impressed by John Shrapnel's Gloucester, Nigel Cooke's Kent and most of all Tobias Menzies, a new name to me, as Edgar. The mostly young audience were attentive and enthusiastic which is exactly what the Young Vic is aiming at. - Gareth James
16 Mar 09
I have loved Rupert Gould's previous Shakespearian productions, but this is patchy. There are some brilliant ideas but not all came off and the production somehow lacks power. Pete Postlethwaite is excellent as a vulnerable Lear, and Forbes Masson as the Fool adds yet another brilliant cameo to his burgeoning repertoire of Shakespearian misfits, but Edmund lacks menace and Cordelia had no presence at all. A pity, since with a few tweaks this could have been such strong production. - Robbie
10 Feb 09
I think Goold's production is bold and contemporary on the whole. Pete Postlethwaite’s Lear holds the character throughout and imbues it with certain moments of Shakespearian madness. Edgar is particularly impressive as the legitimate son and the fool manages to stay away from being funny, which makes the character believable and true to the Shakespearian script.
However, in my opinion the daughters, specially Reagan, failed to deliver a commendable performance. Reagan bites more than she can chew specially when it comes to the moment of violence with Gloucester.
Kent, Gloucester and the fool are very compelling and rounded characters.
I consider the performance should be limited to one break so that the power of the plot does not go awry.
On the whole, this production is a sound view of Shakespearian drama.
- Leonardo Varela
09 Feb 09
Ticked all the boxes for me. Riveting and heartbreaking. - Fulcrum
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