Parody of Macbeth lacked pace
TROY Players are a regular part of the du Maurier Festival, time and again producing theatre of the highest quality.
This year's production had the added dimension of being part of the RSC's Open Stages project; the main criteria of acceptance onto the project being that the production must have a Shakespearean connection.
With this in mind, Troy challenged themselves with Wyrd Sisters, adapted from Terry Pratchett's book by Stephen Briggs.
The plot, which parodies Macbeth, is dark, daft and complex.
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A wordy play with meaty parts, there were outstanding performances from Margaret Gardener, Carole Metters and Olivia Lowry playing the three witches.
Suzanne Bugano was pure joy as wicked Lady Felmet, constantly sparring with her hapless husband the Duke, played by Ed Blincoe.
The Fool of the story was cleverly played by Richard Thomas, with Tim Caulfield turning in good performances as the chamberlain, the demon and Hwel – a playwright.
A large cast playing more than 30 different characters gave costume designer Lesley McCartney and her team long hours of sewing, but the end result of their work was inventive and beautiful.
Sadly, Wyrd Sisters was not Troy at the top of its game; the prompt was kept busy on the night I went and the play lacked pace.
With more than 20 scene changes, the set was brilliantly designed and built to revolve, but what should have been a quick turnaround was slow – hampered by musicians trooping on and off stage in a bid to distract the audience.
It was a directorial error which irritated rather than distracted. Theatre audiences accept scene changes as part and parcel of any production – far better to have the multi-talented Jan Phillips and her musicians sited off stage, rather than inadvertently holding up the flow of the play.
A disappointing performance from Troy Players, but they will bounce back.