Edward II, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse - ★★★☆☆ - Until April 20, 2019


Not having previously visited The Sam Wanamaker Playhouse at The Globe, I was entranced – candle-lit and cosy. Marlowe's Edward II isn't in the class of Shakespeare, but it remains enthralling. The production is pretty straightforward and reaches a great climax with the murder of the king. During the second act the candles are slowly extinguished until at the moment of death we only have a single candle to illuminate the scene. This is all very effective. Well - it would be if the play were to have been better spoken. During the first half, lines just seemed rushed with little understanding; fortunately, things were much better after the interval. Tom Stuart as the king was excellent as was Colin Ryan as Young Spence. For me the best speaking on the stage came from Annette Badlands as Arundel (doubling as the older Mortimer). Sadly the role of powerful she-wolf Queen Isabella was thrown away by the over-parted Katie West. There is little scenery, but a copy of the beautifully tiled Cosmati Floor from Westminster Abbey covers the stage. Period musical instruments are imaginatively used. All in all, it is certainly worth a visit to experience the venue, if for nothing else.

Reviewed by D.S.J.

 Our Score:  ☆☆☆★★ 

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WHEN, WHERE, GETTING THERE:
March 26, 27 & 30 at 2:00 pm
March 26, 27, & 30 at 7:00 pm
April 2, 4, 6, 9, 13, 16 & 20 at 2:00 pm
April 2, 4, 6, 9, 13, 16 & 20 at 7:00 pm
Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, The Globe
Nearest tube: London Bridge
https://www.shakespearesglobe.com/whats-on-2018/edward-ii

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