THIS PRODUCTION HAS NOW CLOSED:
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Shakespeare's Globe Theatre: Previewed 11 May, Opened 22 May 2002, Closed 28 September 2002, returned
Shakespeare's Globe Theatre: From 2 to 12 October 2003
Play by William Shakespeare directed by Tim Carroll.
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An original practices production, exploring clothing, music and setting possible in 1602.
Believing her twin brother Sebastian to have drowned after a shipwreck which she has survived, the young Viola is stranded on the mysterious coast of Illyria. Disguising herself as the page Cesario, she enters the service of the handsome Duke Orsino, who is madly in love with the beautiful Countess Olivia. But when, while delivering a letter, the Countess falls helplessly in love with the disguised messenger herself, Viola realises her problems have only just begun.
Meanwhile, Olivia's roguish cousin Sir Toby Belch is busy planning all manner of mischief. Together with the gentlewoman Maria and his guest – Olivia's hapless suitor Sir Andrew Aguecheek – the prankster Belch schemes to embarrass the pompous steward Malvolio.
This production was originally seen at The Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in 2002 (Previewed 11 May, Opened 22 May 2002, Closed 28 September 2002) and returns for 12 performances only at the end of the 2003 Season prior to a five city across the USA between October and December.
For the 2003 Season revival, the all-male cast will be largely drawn from the original 2002 company, including Mark Rylance as 'Olivia' and Liam Brennan as 'Duke Orsino', as well as Michael Brown and Rhys Meredith as 'Viola' and 'Sebastian'.
Cast (The White Company) from May 2002 Production: Liam Brennan as 'Duke Orsino', Michael Brown 'Viola', Paul Chahidi 'Maria', Peter Hamilton Dyer 'Feste', Colin Hurley 'Antonio', Simon Hyde 'Curio'/'Officer', Jan Knightley 'Fabian'/'Sea Captain', Rhys Meredith 'Sebastian', Mark Rylance 'Olivia', Peter Shorey 'Valentine'/'Priest', Bill Stewart 'Sir Toby Belch', Timothy Walker 'Malvolio' and Albie Woodington 'Sir Andrew Aguecheek'.
Tim Carroll also directing the 2002 season's production of The Golden Ass. His previous plays at the Shakespeare's Globe Theatre include Augustine's Oak (1999), The Two Noble Kinsmen (2000) and Macbeth (2001).
News about the show
On 5 November 2002: At the annual London Evening Standard Theatre Awards this production was shortlisted in one category: Best Director (Tim Carroll). The winners will be announced on Monday 25 November 2003. Click here for the full shortlist...
On 25 November 2002: At the annual London Evening Standard Theatre Awards The Shakespeare's Globe's Artistic Director, Mark Rylance, won a 'Special Award' for the 2002 Globe Theatre Season of Cupid and Psyche. Click here for the full list of winners...
On 16 January 2003: This production received 3 nominations at the 2003 Olivier Awards for 'Best Revival', 'Best Actor' (Mark Rylance) and 'Best Costume Designer' (Jenny Tiramani). The winners will be announced on Friday 14 February 2003. Click here for the full list of nominations...
On 4 February 2003: At the annual Critics' Circle Theatre Awards Mark Rylance won the 'Best Shakespearean Performance Award' for his role in Twelfth Night at the Shakespeare's Globe Theatre.
On 14 February 2003: At the annual Olivier Awards Jenny Tiramani won the 'Best Costume Designer Award' for Twelfth Night at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre.
On 22 August 2003: It was announced that this production will return - with most of the original cast - for 12 performances only from 2 to 12 October 2003 prior to a five city tour of the USA between October and December.
Extracts from the reviews:
From the 2002 Season (Previewed 11 May, Opened 22 May 2002, Closed 28 September 2002)
"...Mark Rylance's stammering, fluttery Olivia is exquisite: gliding across the stage, head in the clouds, she flinches at real, sullied life - uncle Toby drunk, Malvolio capering - and is left utterly breathless by her encounter with Viola/Cesario. Rylance's minute attention to detail renders Olivia's struggles to woo this mysterious boy, and her abashed amazement when Viola's identity is revealed, superbly comic and almost unbearably poignant..." The Guardian
"...Where the production really scores is in the way it captures, often poignantly and amusingly, what Shakespeare sees as our inability to really fathom our feelings and ourselves. Rylance's geisha-like formality makes Olivia's initial, nervy wooing of Viola/Cesario, and later her distraught wielding of a halberd in her beloved's defence, all the more touching and funny... At the end, as the now rightly rearranged couples celebrate their good fortune in a partner-swapping dance, there is a jokey sense of how interchangeable the still identically dressed Viola and Sebastian remain. But if Carroll's production fails to bring out the fugitive tremors of bisexuality that pervade the play, it still turns out to be a thoughtful, funny evening and great midsummer entertainment." The Times
"Bliss, sheer bliss. Not only has Shakespeare's Globe reopened for the summer, it has reopened with a funny, tender, first-rate Twelfth Night that treats the spectator to an authentic Elizabethan experience ... [Director Tim Carroll] snatches every opportunity for comedy going, aided by a crack ensemble that reaches dizzy heights of Illyrian delirium. The traditional costumes are a boon, of course - inherently ridiculous to our eyes..." The Daily Telegraph
"...Mark Rylance as Olivia gives one of the most brilliant Shakespearean performances I have ever seen... Rylance glides through the mayhem on imaginary casters, pale of skin, wearing tiaras and black veils, and speaking with a lightness and intelligence that unlocks the heart of this tantalising comedy." The Daily Mail