This riotous performance of “Twelfth Night” saw Shakespearean comedy unshackled, vibrantly brought to life and was feverishly entertaining for a 21st century audience.

The set was appropriate, perhaps, for this play in which normal behaviour is subverted, but we were confused on entering the theatre to find an array of instruments and microphones apparently left carelessly positioned on the stage.  There was nothing in the way of scenery;  it looked more like a gig.  And what a gig …

There was only one character – that of Sir Toby Belch – who wore Elizabethan costume; everyone else wore normal clothes.  What we saw was partially dependant on audience participation to create the unruly atmosphere; games of Butthead and free pizza caused mayhem and younger audience members found joining in great fun.  It was orderly chaos though, which Puritanical Malvolio stops in his self-righteous speech generating the trick later played on him.  The fourth wall was broken down, but as breaking boundaries is typically Shakespearean, the dramatic values of the comedy were upheld. 

Malvolio in yellow hot pants, live music, and versatile actors all made the 400 year-old play totally entertaining for the ninety minutes of the production.

Harry Robson, Year 12 English Literature student


Twelfth Night

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