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Previewed 6 January 2006, Opened 10 January 2006, Closed 28 January 2006 at the Novello Theatre in London
The Royal Shakespeare Company present William Shakespeare's comedy The Comedy of Errors in London directed by Nancy Meckler.
Brothers, sisters, masters and servants find themselves confused, baffled and bewildered by the events of a single day in Shakespeare's earliest comedy.
The cast for Comedy in Errors in London includes Richard Cordery as 'Egeon' and Jonathan Slinger as 'Dromio of Syracuse' with Alice Barclay, Suzanne Burden, Eke Chukwu, Christopher Colquhoun, Joe Dixon, Stewart W Fraser, Diveen Henry, Tom Hodgkins, Frances Jeater, Bettrys Jones, Sinead Keenan, Geoffrey Lumb, Forbes Masson, Neil McKinven, Christopher Obi, Oscar Pearce, Christopher Robert and Kevin Trainor. Directed by Nancy Meckler with designs by Katrina Lindsay, lighting by Tim Mitchell, music by Ilona Sekacz, sound by Andrea J. Cox, puppetry directed by Mervyn Miller, movement/choreography by Liz Ranken and fights by Malcolm Ranson. This production comes into London's West End following a season at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon in July 2005.
"Nancy Meckler's delightful RSC production... It's a classic Shakespearean comedy about long-separated twins who come together in Ephesus amid a catalogue of mistaken identities. Katrina Lindsay's design resets the play among the low-lifes of 18th Century London and turns the action into a Gothic romp. There are some excellently orchestrated routines." The Mail on Sunday
"Any pain being inflicted in Nancy Meckler's new production of The Comedy of Errors is pantomime pain - a whack to the head with a large silver tray is accompanied by a joke sound-effect, a jab in the bottom delivered via an oversized comedy syringe. Such burlesque hilarity is thanks, of course, to the plot - confusion over two sets of identical twins separated at birth after a shipwreck... It is all very lovely to look at and, thankfully, Meckler's direction and the performances from the twin masters (Joe Dixon and Christopher Colquhoun), both in divine, swaggery tweed and velvet coats, are strong enough. This means the audience can see clearly through the funny costumes and the side-splitting mix-ups to the really rather sad tale of a split family underneath." The Sunday Telegraph
"Gaudy, bawdy, it cries: 'Roll up! Roll up!' and its carnival atmosphere is hard to resist. More often than not, the soundtrack to a Shakespearian comedy is the polite cough of laughter most commonly traced back to English teachers embarrassing their school parties. Tonight, however, the auditorium rings with spontaneous guffaws and bursts of applause, the reward for inventive slapstick, comic precision and the timeless joy of watching people confounded by the unpredictability of life... Recognising that so much of this play is sleight of hand, a trick of the light, Meckler's production borrows the look of early cinema. Watching these characters spin about in a confusion of mistaken identity is like looking into a zoetrope - a whirl of colour light and magic... This is a joyous, life-affirming production, one that neither arrogantly assumes that its audience will be amused by creaky, unmodified jokes about cuckolds, nor obliterates the elemental farce at work." The Sunday Times
"Director Nancy Meckler's version bounces into the capital from Stratford-upon-Avon with its laugh-a-minute reputation and Carry On credentials intact. It's a frantic farce about two sets of identical twins who were separated at birth and years later coincidentally end up in the same town - with chaotic results... Playing Adriana is the accomplished Suzanne Burden. She's good, but it's the twin-set of twins that get the best jokes and steal the acting honours. Christopher Colquhoun, a Casualty regular on TV, is nobleman Antipholus of sleazy, colourful Ephesus, where the action takes place. Forbes Masson plays his servant Dromio. Swooping in from Syracuse come lookalikes Joe Dixon as the posh twin, and his gofer - yes, they go for this and go for that - Jonathan Slinger. Just to add to the confusion, each pair of brothers have the same names. No wonder Adriana, the Ephesus Antipholus's upmarket wife, is baffled. You may be too, especially as it really is hard to tell the two Dromios apart. They even have the same wild, corkscrew hairstyles. But who cares? Relax and enjoy a late Christmas treat that's probably the funniest show in town." The Sun
The Comedy of Errors in London at the Novello Theatre previewed from 6 January 2006, opened on 10 January 2006 and closed on 28 January 2006.