Productions from two of the country’s finest theatre companies are due to come LIVE to the Wellesley during September.
The National Theatre’s production of ‘Julie’ is transmitted on Thursday 6 September at 7pm.
This is an updated version of August Strinberg’s ‘Miss Julie’, given a contemporary setting and themes by Polly Stenham to resonate with today’s audiences.
Wild and newly single, Julie throws a late night party in an expensive London house. In the kitchen, Jean and Kristina clean up as the celebration continues noisily above them.
Crossing the threshold of ‘below stairs’, Julie initiates a power game with Jean. It descends into a savage fight for survival.
Julie is played by Vanessa Kirby, (last seen in ‘The Crown’) and Eric Kofi Abrefa who starred in ‘The Amen Corner’.
The Guardian’s theatre critic said, “Kirby catches perfectly the idea of Julie as a damaged, overgrown child torn between total dependence on others and suspicion that she is seen as a moneybox anyone can shake and rattle.” Time Out called ‘Julie’ “a superlative production”.
The Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of ‘The Merry Wives of Windsor’ is screened LIVE on Wednesday 12 September at 7pm.
This new version of Shakespeare’s farcical comedy of suburbia, wives and over-inflated egos is directed by Fiona Laird and stars David Troughton, completed with fat suit and outrageous cod-piece, with Rebecca Lacey and Beth Cordingly as Mistresses Page and Ford.
The plot follows Sir John Falstaff’s plans to hustle his way to comfortable retirement by seducing the wives of two wealthy men. But it’s the women of Windsor who pull the strings and in a world of wealth, glamour and they finally tell Sir John to ‘shut up’.
Critics have noted that this romp is Windsor’s equivalent of ‘The Only Way is Essex’, with the same fun, innuendo and brightly coloured daftness.
Ian McKellen stars in the title role of ‘King Lear’ in the National Theatre’s production of one of Shakespeare’s finest plays.
McKellen has himself suggested that this may be his last big Shakespeare role – he is 79 – and his performance as a king undone by his own expectations of loyalty, love and obedience in return for a portion of his kingdom is said to be ‘a dazzling swan song.’
The production is given a contemporary but indeterminate setting in which McKellen suggests the gathering of dementia in the aged king who learns the errors of his sense of entitlement and the mercy of compassion only in his final moments. Critics have noted a naturalism in McKellen’s performance to add to the ‘majestic legacy’ he leaves to theatre.
Further details and advance booking can be found on the Wellesley Cinema’s website.