Twelfth Night time evaluate – love’s a dressing up change away in backstage-set model
You can see why director Gordon Barr selected to set Twelfth Night time within the wings of a theatre. Heather Grace Currie’s design – all ropes, dressing-room lights and velvet curtains – locations Shakespeare’s comedy in a world of pretence. All it takes is a brand new costume from the wardrobe, and your identification has modified.
This isn’t simply conscious of the play’s theme concerning the unreliability of outward appearances – whether or not that be the confusion sown by an identical twins or the embarrassment of a person tricked into carrying the improper garments. Additionally it is, with a solid of six, a practical approach of fielding the important thing characters. If it means by the tip we’re watching Jennifer Dick as Orsino (a girl enjoying a person) falling for Stephanie McGregor as Viola (a girl enjoying a girl who has simply been pretending to be a person), nicely, it solely provides to the merry questioning of the true nature of affection.
Streamlined to 90 minutes and performed outside in a single sitting, it’s a cheerful present that trots by way of the story with broad steps. Although the play hangs collectively, the enhancing sacrifices some element: Alan Steele’s Malvolio, particularly, has scarcely had time to ascertain his pompousness when he finds himself ridiculed and deceived. Elsewhere, the extra knockabout the performances, the much less humorous the outcomes.
You’ll be able to, nonetheless, all the time depend on Nicole Cooper for subtlety – and the benefit of a small solid is we see loads of her. She lights up the stage not solely as Olivia, sparring wittily with an equally clever McGregor, but additionally as Sir Andrew Aguecheek, in a humorous sendup of boorish masculinity.
At Bard within the Botanics, Glasgow till 31 July.