English Touring Theatre’s performance of the classic Romeo and Juliet
was a straight but absorbing adaptation of the famous love story.
loved the imposing blue wall backdrop with the white picture frame/
window that served as Juliet’s balcony.
minimalist set gave the cast space to rush around energetically
and bring over the raw emotion that is central to this love-tragedy.
reasonably straight production in 1940’s dress, the English Touring
Theatre proved its ethos that "quality theatre does not have to
be elitist" – remaining true to the play and respecting the audience.
especially energetic Romeo (played by Adam Croasdell) annoyed me
at times by being "too intense" and seemed constantly to be on the
end of a coiled spring.
rash and extremist nature was evident in his constant nervous movements.
performance was impressive as she plays a convincing 14-year-old.
She has a "girl next door" persona. I felt comfortable and relaxed
when she was on stage, despite knowing the extreme events she had
to cope with.
young and inexperienced, she seems more level headed than Romeo,
and thinks clearly despite the emotional storm she is doomed to
relationship between Juliet and her parents is also well done: they
are oblivious to her true feelings, cold distance and reserve dominates
the scenes between them.
comparison of the Nurse and Friar Laurence as alternative (more
loving) parents is obvious.
was hilarious – his piss-take impersonations of Romeo’s love struck
condition, and his clownish antics make his final death even more
powerful when he cries: "A plague, on both your houses".
production was magical, powerful, and got tears from me at the tragic
last message of love battling over hate was made clear - the Motagues
and the Caplets shaking hands over the dead bodies of the lovers
and the cast standing motionless after constant rushing around on
the stage - as if time had stopped.
last words summed up my impressions: "None was the story of more
woe, than of Juliet, and her Romeo".
Reviewed by Sarah Vanstone