The Merry Wives of Windsor at The Minack 22 – 26 August 2016
Guildburys triumphant return to Cornwall’s beautiful Minack Theatre!
2013 saw Guildburys production of ‘Tartuffe’ play to packed houses at The Minack and in August 2016, fresh from a successful run at their summer home open air at Waverley Abbey House in Farnham, Guildburys Theatre Company returned to perform at The Minack Theatre, bringing The Merry Wives of Windsor to life on its spectacular stage.
The cast and crew are shown in this spectacular aerial image designed and photographed by Phill Griffith.
The show sold out before it opened and we had a fantastic run!
See the Minack show images and review here
Jenni Balow – Minack Theatre critic. This production by the Surrey based Guildburys, directed by Rob Sheppard, looks and feels absolutely right. It is fast-paced and its actors clearly relish their traditional comic roles, with Welsher-than-Welsh parson (Mike Lawrence) sparring with a leek as Frenchman (Phill Griffith) comes at him with a baguette!
Mistress Meg Page (Laura Sheppard) engages all of us with her gleeful skipping as she ‘tee-hees’ with her close friend and ally Mistress Ford (Tessa Duggleby) over plans to get their own back, when Falstaff targets the two married women, ” looking for entertainment and sovereigns”.
Costumier Diane Nichols has chosen an array of toning tunics and robes ranging from peach to cherry red to match the shining nose and cheeks of Sir John (Ian Nichols) who looks the part as the “fat knight” in fine brocade, swathed in white as the Witch of Brentford, and finally with quivering antlers as he realises that he’s not really a deer, but an ass.
Frank Ford (Jonathan Arundel) makes us laugh with more disguise as Brook, along with George Page (Dave Ufton) and the dashing Fenton (Oliver Bruce) in orange ribbon breeches.
Ian and his team also designed the simple set, persuading us that we are in Tudor Windsor, with oak beams in the background, and a very fine castle indeed.
A chorus of Elizabethan-sounding songs composed by Tamara Douglas-Morris is tunefully sung by Amy de Roche, Hatty Lawrence, Lizzie Burton and Kim Ferguson.
This is a very Merry production, enhanced by Rob Sheppard’s programme full of historical information, and is a fitting fourth play by Shakespeare to be presented at the Minack this season, reminding us of his remarkable writing 400 years since his death.
A view of the glorious setting in which we performed – simply stunning !
Published on: July 14th, 2016
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