What: Coriolanus, by William Shakespeare, directed for Slip of
the Tongue by Alec Forbes.
Where: The Meteor Theatre.
When: Thursday, Friday and tonight.
Reviewed by: Hilary Falconer.
The tragedy concerning this play is that it's on for only three nights
and most people don't know it's on at all.
Alec Forbes' minimalist production of Shakespeare's last tragedy deserves
better. Taking the role of Agrippa the peacemaker himself, he has extracted
some fine and disciplined performances from a large cast and produced
a version which is stylised but retains drama and tension.
Coriolanus is a blokes' play. There are really only two female parts and
Virgilia, Coriolanus' wife, is a thankless one, but Alida Steemson gives
mother, Volumnia, the aggression and passion needed for us to realise
why her son is how he is.
Russell Raethal gives his all as Coriolanus. At the beginning, he threatens
to make us see him as merely angry rather than arrogant and proud, but
as the play progresses he successfully employs more varied emotions to
give the character complexity.
Graeme Cairns plays Aufidius, Coriolanus' nemesis _ and with acting like
this he should get into Parliament.
Respecting the Meteor's reputation as one of the best black box theatres
in the country, there is no stage or set. When the audience needs to be
given a different perspective or transported to another part of Rome,
we were simply moved.
An obscure, harrowing and
prolonged tragedy, but nonetheless an intelligent portrayal of history
Produced by Slip of the Tongue, Alec Forbes, Director.