One of the (very) few advantages of the current situation is that there is so much wonderful cultural, artistic and creative content being made available for free via the internet to keep us all entertained while we are confined to our quarters.
This week we have not one but two terrific shows to share with you. It’s a choice between two famous double acts Anthony and Cleopatra and Jeeves and Wooster. We couldn’t decide which to go for so we thought we’d leave it up to you – and why even bother picking one or the other when you can enjoy them both!
Anthony and Cleopatra
This superlative production from the National Theatre stars the brilliant Ralph Finnes and Sophie Okonedo as the famously fated couple in Shakespeare’s epic tragedy of politics, passion and power.
The show was originally staged at the National Theatre in 2018 and was a huge hit with critics and audiences. The production has all the lavish design, sets and costuming you’d expect from the National and the lead pairing turn in suitably towering performances as a two of the most famous lovers in history.
Anthony and Cleopatra will be available to view from Thursday 7th May curtesy of the National Theatre At Home initiative.
Our second selection is a very different piece altogether. Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical adaption of the adventures of P.G. Woodhouse’s two most beloved characters Bertie Wooster and his “gentleman’s personal gentleman” Jeeves is itself one of the greatest tragedies in the history of theatre but for all the wrong reasons.
The show had all the makings of a huge hit when it was first produced in 1975. The source material from the greatest comic writer in the history of the English language was adapted for the stage by the one of the countries most accomplished playwrights, Alan Ayckbourn, with music by the maestro A.L.W. himself. What could go wrong? Well apparently everything! The show was a massive turkey and closed after less than a month of solidly terrible reviews and audience walk outs.
The show was tucked away out of sight and mind for more than twenty years only to be brought back and extensively overhauled by Lloyd Webber and Ayckbourn in 1996. The re-worked shows was a much more successful affair, enjoying a reasonable run in the West End and even a Broadway transfer.
This second incarnation of the production will be available to view from Friday 8th May for just 48 hours curtesy of Lloyd Webber’s Youtube Channel, The Shows Must Go On.