Review: Romeo and Juliet

Stamford Shakespeare Company's Romeo and Juliet.
Stamford Shakespeare Company's Romeo and Juliet.
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Stamford Shakespeare Company’s production at Tolethorpe Hall.

It was beautiful, delightful and sooo romantic... and that was before we even got to the play.

We were in the verdant grounds of Tolethorpe Hall, in between Bourne and Stamford, where Stamford Shakespeare Company puts on outdoor performances each year.

Naturally, the occasion is vastly improved when the weather is kind, and we were indeed blessed with a lovely, warm day for our picnic on the lawns before enjoying one of the company’s three plays showing for 2015.

This season the company turned its attention to Henry V and Tom Jones, but we were there for a colourful portrayal of that classic tale of star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet.

The production opened with a lively and colourful scene of a gypsy dance taking place among the authentic-looking vardos where Juliet and her family live. This formed the scene for the play, with some clever stagecraft towards the end when a cross and coffin emerged from the stage floor for the tragic tomb scene.

The play’s tragic outcome is well-known, but Angela Harris nicely balanced that with some comical lines as Juliet’s nurse and accomplice in the ill-fated marriage. The rest of the cast all played their parts like professionals.

Jean Hodge