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After the Knot Garden I felt I deserved a good operatic Shakespeare adaptation. And what could be better than Verdi's Falstaff, a hilarious trouser-dropping, Wedgie-giving, crossdressing farce of an opera, from Shakespeare's cross-dressing gay-marriage farce the Merry Wives of Windsor.

Sometimes, adding low humour is fulfilling the author's intent.

And this was a brilliant production - two groups of people hiding from each other in the same washing spinning-up thingie - you know, the ones that look kind of like a tree? - and coming out from the washing as needed to talk, whilst the others spin the washing around. Falstaff, fat, bald, and swaggering. The bottom of the washing basket falling out when the servants lift it to throw it in the river, and Falstaff walking along under it, only to be left squaltting in the window ledge until Alice kicked him into the river.

And the Elf scene, with a wonderful effect of the world turning upside down, and the washing line-spinning-clothestree thing being used as Herne's oak lifted into the air, and slowly turned over as the moon ansd stars moved onto the floor of the stage, and with the elves made up of the key props from the show: the antlers of Faldstaff's black huntsman costume, the broom that was used in so many scenes for hitting people with. (on one elf the arms were made of a noose (the huntsman hanged himself) instead of the antlers).

It was just brilliantly staged, brilliantly sung, and had brilliant comic timing. I only wish I could see that production again at will.


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on February 5, 2005 2:50 AM.

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