June 26, 2009
THEATER REVIEW | 'TWELFTH NIGHT'
I Love You, You’re Perfect. You’re a Girl?
By CHARLES ISHERWOOD
“Most wonderful.” The exclamation of joyous surprise that bursts from the lips of Countess Olivia at the climax of “Twelfth Night,” when she discovers that her new husband appears to have divided himself in two, seems an apt reaction to the scintillating new production of Shakespeare’s romantic comedy that opened Thursday night at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park.
“Twelfth Night” is a perennial favorite, and with its multifaceted plot mixing sweetness, sadness and silliness it is also about as surefire as Shakespeare plays get. If the romances are dreary, the comedy may still crackle. And vice versa. But this polished staging, expertly directed by Daniel Sullivan, is the most consistently pleasurable the city has seen in at least a decade. And it is certainly one of the most accomplished Shakespeare in the Park productions the Public Theater has fielded in some time. Incidentally — or perhaps not — the varied talents of its all-American lead cast help restore faith in the city’s ability to cast Shakespeare in depth.
All together now: most wonderful!( Read more... )