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Opened 22 January 2004, Closed 6 March 2004 at the Queen's Theatre in London
The Royal Shakespeare Company present John Fletcher's The Tamer Tamed in London in a seven week repertory season along with Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew.
In John Fletcher's hilarious 'sequel' to The Taming of the Shrew, Petruchio gets married for a second time, and is tamed by his second wife, Maria. Written 20 years after Shakespeare's original, but within his lifetime, John Fletcher's The Tamer Tamed was written as a calling card to Shakespeare in the hope of prompting future creative collaborations.
The cast for The Tamer Tamed in London features Alexandra Gilbreath as 'Maria' and Jasper Britton as 'Petruchio' along with Daniel Brocklebank, Paul Chahidi, Branwell Donaghey, Christopher Duncan, Amy Finegan, Naomi Frederick, Patricia Gannon, Christopher Godwin, Natasha Gordon, Walter Hall, David Horovitch, Rory Kinnear, Oliver Maltman, Edmund Moriarty, Eve Myles, Alistair Robins, James Staddon and Nicolas Tennant. It is directed by Gregory Doran with movement/choreography by Michael Ashcroft, designs by Stephen Brimson Lewis, lighting by Wayne Dowdeswell, music by Paul Englishby and sound by Martin Slavin. This production comes into London's West End following a season at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon in April 2003.
"Gregory Doran's production has improved vastly since Stratford. This is a big, rowdy, swashbuckling comedy, full of greed, deceptions and lewd innuendos, with a modest, slightly improbable morality attached like a designer label. Fletcher was a master crowd-pleaser, slick and randy, quite shamelessly entertaining and entirely willing to sacrifice psychology to a good theatrical bombshell. It is he, not Shakespeare, who would be in television today. The company rises to this robust piece of triviality like experts and consummate performers who know a good joke when they see one... unmissable." The Sunday Times
"The Tamer Tamed is John Fletcher's satirical sequel to The Taming of the Shrew, written around 1610 and popular in its own time, but neglected for centuries until Greg Doran staged it in Stratford - together with Shrew - last year... The play is astonishingly modern in its outlook, which may lead one to overrate it a bit. The first time you see it, you want to cheer; the second time round, you are more aware of rough patches and clumsy plotting. But it is still full of life, with lots of good jokes and witty lines... Alexandra Gilbreath's husky-voiced Maria displays as much merriment as defiance. Jasper Britton has some very funny moments as Petruchio, especially in the virtuoso sequence when he feigns a fatal cough." The Sunday Telegraph
"A smutty, boisterous sequel written some 20 years later by John Fletcher. Kate has died and Petruchio is getting hitched again, this time to Maria. She plans to tame her husband by putting him through the humiliation he put Kate through in Shakespeare's play. That includes no nookie, even on his wedding night. With all the women in the neighbourhood supporting her - their marvellous clog dance with percussive pots and pans fills them with fire and passion as surely as the haka galvanises the All Blacks before a rugger game - the men haven't a snowflake's chance in hell. This piece has all the subtlety of a Punch and Judy show, but Greg Doran and his company play it for all it's worth, and often rather more than that, to the point where I felt they were enjoying themselves rather more than I was. An amusing, but overblown, chunk of dramatic archaeology." The Mail on Sunday
The Tamer Tamed in London at the Queen's Theatre opened on 22 January 2004 and closed on 6 March 2004.