Twelfth Night

Bold, imaginative, challenging – that’s the concept behind Wils Wilson’s new version of “Twelfth Night” which opens the new season at the Lyceum Theatre in a co-production with Bristol Old Vic.

With stage setting and colourful psychedelic costumes designed by Ana Ines Jabares-Pita and original music by Meilyr Jones, this production has taken the play by its conventions and given it a few smart twirls.

The genders have been well and truly bent, with hero Orsino played by Colette Dalal Tchantcho, Toby Belch becoming Lady Tobi (played in a man’s suit by Dawn Sievewright), and Joanne Thomson taking the part of Sebastian. Add in the confusion of cross-dressing identical twins who look nothing like each other and we have acting in its truest sense, with belief well and truly suspended.

Christopher Green’s Malvolio is a high point: he is magnificent as the bowler-hatted servant turned hair-tossing rock god after donning his cross-gartered yellow stockings. The music too is generally enjoyable, and Dylan Read is a likeable and puckish Feste. There is however rather a disjointed feel about the play-within-a-play format.

It’s meant to be a fun, house party take on “Twelfth Night” but the overall effect is more Upstart Crow than Shakespeare. It is also unfortunately too long.

Lyceum Theatre until October 6th before transferring to Bristol.


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