By William Shakespeare
Director Eamon Flack
Set Designer Michael Hankin
Costume Designer Stephen Curtis
Lighting Designer Nick Schlieper
Composer Alan John
What country, friends, is this?
Viola (Act 1, Sc 2)
Eamon Flack will turn his magic touch for comedy to one of the Bard’s finest delights Twelfth Night or What You Will as a warming winter treat for Sydney audiences. In the 400th year since Shakespeare’s death the jokes will be just as hearty in the production for audience both young and old.
Twins are washed up after a shipwreck on the shores of a strange land, each unaware of the other’s fate. They’re in Illyria, which is strangely like our world: the repressed and the debauched are at constant war, the desires of men and women seem eternally thwarted. But this is a dreamland too – where music is the food of love, and nobody is quite what they seem. Girls are boys, boys are girls, puritans are lusting suitors, drunkards are moralists, and fools, of course, are wise. Eventually brother and sister find each other again – that’s hardly a spoiler – but what will they see and hear in the meantime?
There’s more to Shakespeare’s great play than muddled identity and exuberant celebration – it’s a mature story of melancholia amid the mayhem, of what is lost along the way even when life’s journey is a barrel of laughs.
Our cast is an embarrassment of riches: Peter Carroll (The Great Fire, Seventeen) as the killjoy Malvolio and Nikki Shiels makes her Belvoir debut as Viola with Amber McMahon (Angels in America) as her twin Sebastian. They are joined by an array of rogues and charmers. John Howard (Ivanov), Anthony Phelan (Once in Royal David’s City, The Wild Duck) and Lucia Mastrantone (The Book of Everything) as the Countess Olivia’s coterie of friends and staff, Anita Hegh (The Wild Duck, The Seagull) as the Countess herself, and Damien Ryan (Nora) as the Duke of Illyria. Emele Ugavule (Mother Courage and Her Children) will play Antonio, the ship’s captain, and she will play the piano to accompany the singing new songs by acclaimed composer Alan John.
We are thrilled to announce that one of Belvoir’s favourite performers, Keith Robinson (Hamlet, The Alchemist), will be making a long awaited return to the stage. Robinson contracted a variant of the neurological condition Guillain-Barre Syndrome ten years ago, which has kept him from the stage. In Twelfth Night or What You Will he will play Feste the fool, using his wheelchair.
After his celebratory A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2010 and the joyous As You Like It in 2011, Flack turns his enthusiasm for Shakespearean comedy to this generous, family-friendly production of Twelfth Night or What You Will.
Notes for Editors
23 July – 4 September 2016
8pm Saturday 23 July
6.30pm Sunday 24 July
8pm Tuesday 26 July
8pm Wednesday 27 July
2pm Thursday 1 September
3pm 4 September
Tuesday & Wednesday 6.30pm, Thursday & Friday 8pm,
Saturday 2pm & 8pm, Sunday 5pm
Full from $72, Seniors/Industry/Group $62, Concession $49, Previews $40,
30 Down $47, Student Saver $37
*Belvoir’s ticket prices can be dynamically adjusted either up or down without notice. This can apply to a small number of tickets in response to demand for a specific performance date or time.
Belvoir St Theatre
25 Belvoir St, Surry Hills
02 9699 3444
Rehearsal images by Brett Boardman – download
Production images by Brett Boardman – download
For media information and interviews contact Elly Baxter
[email protected] | 02 8396 6242 | 0407 163 921