Andromache

We saw Graham McLaren’s Hamlet a couple of years ago – a stripped-down version showing the bare bones of the revenge tragedy it would have been in the hands of one of Shakespeare’s contemporaries. Not really comparable to a couple of the great Hamlet’s we have seen, but better than the general run of them and exciting theatre in its own right.

Well, his production of Andromache has a similar pace and style, set in post-invasion Iraq (or somewhere similar). I am sure Evie Christie’s writing was a big part of this, but she certainly appears to have found a soulmate in McLaren. (I don’t know the Racine original, but I doubt much more than the basic plot outline survived here.)
The play is loud, savage, brash – like the emotions and obsessions of the main characters.
Arsinee Khanjian is the only actor I recognised, playing the only low-key (and relatively minor) role, that of Andromache. She was very dignified as the Iraqi/Trojan queen, but I think she could have turned up the wattage a bit to compete with the strutting American/Greek characters.
Christopher Morris was apparently in the 2009 Hamlet, but I did not recognise him. I found his performance a bit off, in that he tended to gesture and declaim, while the rest of the acting was more naturalistic. Still, lots of intensity.
Steven McCarthy (Orestes) and Ryan Hollyman (Pylades) I do not know, but were excellent and seemed thoroughly real.
Christine Horne (Hermione) was terrifying – but in a good way. Her Hermione is why men become heroes. Or monks.
A thrilling performance; I am glad I got to it. Eat your heart out Cathy!
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About cathyriggall

Theatre junkie, who thinks live theatre is the ultimate form of living on the edge. You never know what will happen when an actor steps on the stage.
This entry was posted in Graham McLaren, Luminato 2011, Necessary Angel. Bookmark the permalink.

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