This was going to be an attempt at a cheery post for once, but no. I’ve just had a call (and messages) that my beloved and dearest and so like me it was very funny cousin Catherine has died abruptly, and no one knows if this will finish off my Aunt, her mother, who had the stroke, because Catherine was her favourite, and I am just so upset right now. So very fucking upset (but thank you John, who called, because talking helped).
Anyway, after a long Friday of office fuckwitery (I wish I could tell you what my clients did next, but I can’t, but let’s just say it’ll be one spectacular screw-up I’ll be airing as a grievance for months/years to come) I was in a mood for nasty.
And nothing is nastier than Richard III (though I am a badge-wearing Ricardian). I went to see the Bell Shakespeare Company performance of R3 at the Opera House with Kate Mulvany as Richard, in the role she was actually born to play (she rips off her shirt in one scene, no FX required, very brave).
I knew she’d be damn good, so I was looking forward to it. What I got was a performance so fucking on point and pin you to your seat amazing that everyone else can just go home now – R3 is done. We couldn’t leapt to our feet cheering quick enough come the curtain call.
This was the first post-Trump R3 production, and it was interesting. Instead of setting it in WWII as most have, this was very Weimar Republic, with the rest of the characters just clueless as to what was going on until hit by an axe. Last year, in other words.
And Richard, instead of a moody, misunderstood post-Columbine boy who was just never given a chance, Kate’s R3 was evil, winking, leering, manipulative, ruthless and unapologetic going for it game-player who just didn’t give a shit about anyone or anything but what he needed to get the crown. Welcome to the brave new world of evil for evil’s sake.
And yet, no matter how vile Kate’s R3 was, and, in the age of Trump, there was licence to be pretty damn vile, the grinning and winking still had us onside and complicit in this awful play. Yeah, nothing like real life, as we stand half amused that it could be that shockingly awful, gasping, and doing nothing.
It was great. So fucking amazing. I’ve never seen better. And I’d had a nice-ish dinner at the Opera Bar beforehand.
So I woke to Saturday, all sunny and feeling like I’d turned a corner and all was right with the world. It wasn’t to last.
Sunday brought more rain and a nasty head cold that has lodged itself in my ears to fester, as they often do. So I really felt quite awful and feverish all day, just enough to be irksome.
Monday comes, pitch black and lashing with rain and dreadful news.