Coriolanus: the despair looks familiar, but doesn’t feel it

Bard on the Beach is mounting William Shakespeare's Coriolanus

Volumnia (Colleen Wheeler) and Coriolanus (Moya O’Connell) share some difficult family time. (Photo by Tim Matheson)

What’s wrong with this production? For all of its physical beauty, why does it have about as much emotional impact as a video game? [Read more…]

All’s Well That Ends Well: the pick of the season (so far) at Bard

Bard on the Beach is producing All's Well That Ends Well at Bard on the Beach.

Sarena Parmar is both steely and fragile as Helena in All’s Well That Ends Well (Photo by Emily Cooper)

Yes! This is the Bard on the Beach production I’ve been waiting for. This is the one to see.

All’s Well That Ends Well is rarely produced — and there are good reasons for that — but co-directors Johnna Wright and Rohit Chokhani have set the story in India in 1947, in the last days of the British Raj, and that choice unleashes myriad pleasures. It’s exciting to see more of Vancouver represented onstage and in the audience, thrilling to hear Hindi spoken in a Bard production, a joy to be introduced to so much previously unfamiliar talent, and a treat to revel in the aesthetic exuberance of the spectacle — including the glittering fabrics and infectious dancing. [Read more…]

Shakespeare in Love: not even sustained infatuation


Bard on the Beach is presenting Shakespeare in Love

Ghazal Azarbad and Charlie Gallant make an openhearted—and comely—couple as Viola and Will.(Photo by Tim Matheson)

My experience of Shakespeare in Love at Bard on the Beach was kind of like an okay date that ended with some fantastic making out. The morning after, am I in love with this show? Nope, not by a long shot, although I’m grateful for the pleasures it offers. [Read more…]

The Taming of the Shrew refuses to be tamed

Bard on the Beach is presenting the Taming of the Shrew, directed by Lois Anderson.

In Bard on the Beach’s production of The Taming of the Shrew, the dresses are a lot more fun that the comic business. (Photo of Kate Besworth and Jennifer Lines by Tim Matheson)

Director Lois Anderson has brought us the all-yelling version of The Taming of the Shrew. It offers virtually no emotional access. And it doesn’t make sense. [Read more…]

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