From: Thursday, 13th January 2005
To: Saturday, 5 February 2005
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King Lear divides his Kingdom between his daughters according to a declaration of their love for him. His eldest Goneril and Regan exaggerate their affection and inherit. His youngest daughter Cordelia speaks only the truth and is banished. So begins the tragedy of King Lear, whose dignity, sanity and finally life are torn from him by a self-seeking younger generation, ambitious for his power. What is love, what is madness, what is truth - Shakespeare explores these questions together with many others in King Lear, widely considered to be his greatest tragedy.
19 January 2005
Bill Alexander’s production of King Lear, the latest in the Royal Shakespeare Company's Tragedies season, sets out its stall early. As the spotlight lingers on the monarch's two eldest daughters and their husbands, we’re aware that this play is going to be about their ambitions as much as it is about Lear’s foolishness. And as the long evening (this is a near full version of the text) progresses, family ties aren’t going to get in the way – think The Sopranos in a pagan setting.
Some recent productions have tried to make Gonerill (as spelled in the programme for this staging) and Regan more sympathetic – not so here. Emily Raymond and Ruth Gemmell are the embodiment of selfishness, almost gleefully counting the days before they can get their hands on the levers of power. Gemmell’s Regan in particular is the daughter that every parent would dread having.
Corin Redgrave’s Lear is far from the textbook idea of a man fast approaching seni...
Latest User Review
220.127.116.11) - 21 January 2005:
Corin Redgrave is a talented and intelligent actor; a Lear he is not. And he's still the best thing in this production. ...
Michael G Jones