Directed and designed by John Senczuk
Lighting design by Trent Suidgeest
Sound design by James Luscombe
Featuring Richard Mellick, Nick Maclaine, Ethan Tomas, Ian Toyne, David McLeod, Sam Tye, Edgar Metcalfe, Cody Fern, Andrew Hale, John Pratt, Nick Candy and John Aitken.
Heath Ledger Theatre, State Theatre Centre
June 1 – 4, 2011
Veteran WA playwright John Aitken has seized the opportunity presented by the opening of the State Theatre Centre to imagine the watershed year of William Shakespeare’s career in The Enchanters, and he and director/designer John Senczuk have fashioned a likeable, albeit patchy, entertainment from it.
It’s a ripping yarn, with cloak-and-daggery at court and lawyers, swords and money in the streets. Aitken has drawn assiduously from his sources, most notably, I suspect, James Shapiro’s terrific 1599, to tell the story of Richard Burbage’s company, the Chamberlain’s Men, and the opening of their new theatre, the Globe.
Aitken can’t resist airing some of the more contentious speculations about Shakespeare, his sexuality and religious and political loyalties among them. Personally, I’m averse to the idea of Shakespeare as a high-class rent boy for the Earl of Southhampton and some of the other detritus of Shakespeariana given credence by the play, but you can be the judge of that.
Link here to the complete review in The West Australian