Happy New Year - a little late, perhaps, as we are 10 days into the year, but it's my first post this year, so why not!
My parents visited for Christmas, but went home for New Year, so I had a quiet evening in, but then made a day trip to London on 2nd January, so see a matinee of 'The Winter's Tale' at the Garrick Theatre.
It was a real treat, with Judi Dench (as Paulina) being particularly good. I was a little less enthused at Branagh's Leontes - I have not seen the play before,so I am not entirely sure whether this is down to the play or the actor - Leontes' behaviour is irrational even for a Shakespearean character, and if you are looking for crazy jealousy I think he (Shakespeare) did it better in Othello!
Hadley Fraser made a convincing Polixenes, particularly during the scenes in which he learns that his best and oldest friend is prepared to have him murdered on a mere suspicion. I would have liked to see him in a bigger role however - it might be fun to see him and Branagh switch roles, for instance.
But Judi Dench undoubtedly had the meatiest role, as the older woman prepared to speak out on behalf of the wrongfully accused Queen, even at the risk of her own life. She's great!
Well worth seeing. (And it has been broadcast live to cinemas, so will probably be repeated in future, if you want to see it and don't have the opportunity to get to London)