As You Like It, by William Shakespeare, directed for Slip of the Tongue
Productions by Alec Forbes.
Where: Coxhead Flat, Hamilton Gardens.
When: until Thursday, 7pm, Saturday 4pm.
Reviewed by: Hilary Falconer.
Feuding fathers, misguided lovers, a trans-gender heroine and a beautiful
sunset over the Waikato River - it must be Hamilton Gardens' Summer Shakespeare.
We won't mention the anachronistic jet-boats zooming through the Forest
of Arden, although the water-skier who fell off in full view at the start
of Act II got a huge cheer.
As You Like It is not one of Will's more complex plays. There's less screaming
around in outrageous costumes than previous Hamilton Gardens productions
- the humour is in the words - with puns, double entendres and deliberately
Fortunately Slip of the Tongue go for a natural approach to the dialogue
and lively interchanges between characters make up for lack of action.
Shakespeare has made his female lead Rosalind strong and smart, without
the bitchy or devious traits he often endows his strong women.
Her only problem is she falls in love with the drippy Orlando and, well,
that's it really.
Alida makes the most of Rosalind, bringing out both the street-smart and
lovestruck sides. Her first meeting with a drooling, speechless Orlando
(Adam Pope) is delightful.
Adrienne Clothier combines engaging ditsiness with strength of character
as Rosalind's cousin Celia, completing the female double act.
Notable smaller roles - Graeme Cairns as Jaques, making a very good job
of the seven ages of man monologue, and Russell Raethel in a short but
impressive part as Charles the Wrestler, obviously arrived straight from
the Hero parade.
One of Shakespeare's most
well-loved comedies. Orlando falls hopelessly in love with Rosalind.