The New Playhouse is the Thing
If anyone should ever dare wonder - even for a nanosecond - why the Royal Shakespeare Company exists, he need simply watch YouTube clips from productions of Hamlet featuring actors like Kenneth Branagh and David Tennant.
This week I’ve been reveling in the multi-thousand words and pictures about the reopening of the company's theaters in Stratford, but those enthusing over the blend of old and new must be the most apposite as not only is this how best to capture the spirit of Shakespeare’s universality, but also because it is always a mix which touches the heart.
Moreover, if there were ever a reason for me to return to the U.K. – and there would have to be a good one – it would be to watch The Merchant of Venice directed by Associate Director Rupert Goold during this 50th anniversary year.
Meanwhile, watching Branagh in Hamlet is to see him at his superb best, and I was reminded of his extraordinary talent only last week when I happened on his 1993 film version of Much Ado About Nothing.
Seventeen years ago, the main actors were in their youthful prime and the production – as I saw it again on our new, wall-mounted flat screen television – still exudes effortless beauty, energy and vitality by the bucket.
Wouldn’t it be great if the oh-so politically correct U.K. literati could be persuaded to bring the RSC on tour to Israel and give us their best in the current production of The Merchant …?