The Cherry Orchard & The Winter's Tale
Opened 9 June 2009 - playing in repertoire!
Cherry Orchard: By Anton Chekhov, new version by Tom Stoppard
The Winter's Tale: By William Shakespeare
Directed: Sam Mendes
Cast: Simon Russell Beale, Sinead Cusack, Ethan Hawke
Produced: The Old Vic, Brooklyn Academy of Music & Neal Street Productions
What the popular press had to say....
BENEDICT NIGHTINGALE for THE TIMES says, "Mendes’s Bridge Project aims to throw a creative pontoon across the Atlantic. His company is half-British, half-American...both plays kept the audience rapt with their tales of loss and waste." MICHAEL BILLINGTON for THE GUARDIAN says, "The two productions of these time-haunted plays are strikingly clear and and unfussy even if I marginally preferred the Chekhov, in a lively, new pun-delighting translation by Tom Stoppard, to the Shakespeare." CHARLES SPENCER for THE DAILY TELEGRAPH says, "What's fascinating about seeing these two superficially different plays together is how much they have in common. Both deal with time and mortality, with the passage of years yielding some comfort in Shakespeare's play...The shows will be best remembered for Simon Russell Beale's wonderful performances." MICHAEL COVENEY for THE INDEPENDENT says, "The tonality of these British and American actors is always interesting but never satisfactory. It creates an audible confusion similar to hearing the same piano sonata on modern and baroque instruments. Mendes and his designer Anthony Ward try to bind them in a governing style, but it doesn't work. The Shakespeare's too boring, the Chekhov too bland. " HENRY HITCHINGS for THE EVENING STANDARD says, "Sam Mendes’s direction displays imagination, but sometimes lacks rhythm...a pair of productions that do not fully satisfy." GERALD BERKOWITZ for THE STAGE says, "The Winter’s Tale is the stronger of the two, with a warm atmosphere throughout and powerful performances in both halves of the bifurcated play.