Saturday, August 22, 2009

Another Dramatic Day

Following another delicious breakfast at Morning Glory (I had a coconut almond waffle with lemon butter...wonderful!) we headed off to a last busy day at the Shakespeare Festival. First was the afternoon with "All's Well that Ends Well." This was a good production, although not entirely to the liking of our 8-year-old. She got it, though. She and Grandma had done some studying last night while we were off seeing Henry VIII, so she knew what to expect. Some bits (particularly when the French king got a bit long-winded) were not really able to hold her interest.

I thought the play was pretty well done. My favorite actor was probably Lafew, who had wonderful stage presence and great, expressive eyes. The repertory aspect was in view again, as the Clown/narrator (an invention of the director, which worked well) turned out to be none other than Don Quixote from our first play of this trip. He was amusing in this role, and worked very hard, too.

After a brief stroll through the art and craft fair along Ashland Creek, we had some ice cream at Mix, then a quick visit to the Tudor Guild gift shop, as we wanted to pick up a couple of items.

We then dropped off Grandma and our daughter for a visit with some cousins, and Jan and I went to dinner. We started with a little wine tasting at the EdenVale Enoteca, but weren't too impressed with any of the wines. So we stolled off to dine at the Ashland Bistro Cafe, which was quite good. Jan's scallop carbonara was particularly good.

Then to the final play of this trip, "Equivocation." In many ways this was the perfect conclusion to the trip, and it particularly helped to have seen Macbeth and Henry VIII beforehand. All in all, it was outstanding, with a cast of six players, five of whom play many, many roles. I believe we had seen all of them in other productions during the week, notably Anthony Heald (who we'd previously seen as Mayor Shinn in The Music Man and Cardinal Wolsey in Henry VIII) as Shagspeare and Jonathan Haugen (Gardiner in Henry VIII) as (mostly) Robert Cecil.

Intense, thought-provoking, and clever, I thought this was the best play we saw overall, and probably worth the trip all by itself. Two big thumbs up!

Now the theater part of the trip is done, and we're driving home tomorrow. I doubt I'll have anything to write about that, but one never knows.

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