Cigarettes and Chocolate – Update and Glenda Jackson as King Lear – Review

As you know if you’re a regular reader, I am now working on a new project: Cigarettes and Chocolate, on next term at the ADC theatre on the 1st and 2nd of February. 

Progress for this is going quite well: I have all but one members of my production team all signed up, which is great! (If you’re a student publicity designer and you’d like to join us hit me up!!) I’ve also designed my budget and sent of several funding applications, and I’m all set to send of the next few funding applications in the next few days. I’m having a few issues with rights, mostly that I’m struggling to find the right (pun intended) place to apply for them (if you are that person/place, please let me know!!) but that will hopefully be sorted out this week or possibly the following week. 

The show is also fully cast (though that is the director’s responsibility, and not mine) which is great, so we will be able to hit the ground running for both rehearsals and production meetings from the start of next term.

I also wanted to mention the play I saw a the weekend before last: King Lear at the Old Vic, with Glenda Jackson in the title role. Regular readers will probably guess that this is another play I wanted to see for my dissertation (for those of you who are new, firstly welcome, and the context here is that I am writing a dissertation on the use of female actors in contemporary performance of Shakespeare). It was a very good production, with a lot of interesting things for me to draw on for my dissertation: both in Jackson’s Lear, and in the presentation of gender in the three sisters.

I thought Jackson’s Lear had nothing particularly feminine about him, but he was a more petulant than violently angry Lear, as ones I’ve seen previously have been. It is an interpretation I think works very well, but I did wonder if it was easier in a known-to-be-played-by-a-female-actor Lear. If you saw it, what did you think? I’d love to hear different opinions about this in the comments!

The run at the Old Vic is finished, so despite wanting to, I can’t recommend it to you there, but I’ve heard rumours of a UK tour, so keep your eyes and ears peeled, and if it does happen, and comes somewhere near you, I really recommend it! And, as I said a few weeks ago, I also really recommend the Donmar Warehouse’s Shakespeare Trilogy which is still on in London for a few performances, and will be going to New York in the new year: if you can get there, you should go!!

That’s all for this week, thank you as always for reading, please like the post if you enjoyed it, follow the blog for more and leave your thoughts and questions in the comments! I’d be particularly interested in hearing any theatre recommendations you may have! I look forward to seeing you here next week for an exciting post I’ve wanted to write for a long time!

Emily xxx

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