Two Noble Kinsmen Shakespeare and Fletcher Globe Theatre, London (until 30/06/18)
music by Eliza Carthy
Review by Jonathan Seath
This light, late Jacobean romance was first published in 1634 and is attributed to both John Fletcher and William Shakespeare. The normally complex text has been carefully edited to highlight the major plot: in true Shakespearean style two friends fall for the same woman and decide to resolve things with a duel, only for a twist of fate to result in the victor being fatally thrown from his horse, leaving the loser to marry his girl.
Inspired by the play’s Morris language and references, The Two Noble Kinsmen is set in pastoral ‘Merrie England’ and brought to life with original music composed by Eliza Carthy, with dance choreographed by Ewan Wardrop. A walking group of musicians (including James Delarre from Mawkin on fiddle) supports the action and is the band for a range of exciting dances including clogging, stick dancing and high energy routines.
The costumes and choreography are fabulous and the open air, closeness of the action and acoustic music result in a marvellous spectacle with a modern but always strong, traditional feel. The songs naturally support the action and the final ‘farewell’ song from all the cast and musicians on stage was particularly memorable.
Unfortunately the run is quite short but highly recommended if you can get tickets. If you are prepared to promenade, prices are competitive. This is a new venture for Eliza and you can hear her talking more about the project below. Apparently, The Globe have filmed the show and will be selling DVDs in their shop soon. There are no other plans at this time to record.
On Sunday March 4th my band Rosewood played at the famous folk music pub the Blaxhall Ship. A jolly time was had by all including the band. Had the gig been an earlier time during the last week I doubt we would have been able to get there in the snow and blizzard conditions we all had to face. But that day the sun had been out and most of the Suffolk snow had melted and been replaced by floods. Travelling to Blaxhall from Hadleigh reminded me of another occasion, 9th December 2017, when we tried to do the same but then we failed to arrive at our destination and the gig had to be cancelled. We had been travelling down from Norfolk encountering more and more snow as the A12 wound on and just before Woodbridge we came to a frozen standstill. That’s when we phoned the pub and they said the roads were really bad there and best not to try so we limped home.
Saturday 11th November 2017 - An evening of singing and dancing
Laura Cannell, The new Director of the East Anglian Traditional Music Trust (EATMT) and her Team organised a fantastic night at Earl Stonham Village Hall.
Professional & amateur musicians, singers & stepdancers came together to provide a very merry, happy evening enjoyed by all