With a love-story that takes us through the mystical forest of Arden, plus some spirited gender-swapping and comedic mistaken identities, As You Like It is a natural choice for a balmy summer evening (The Globe had the same idea and will also stage As You Like It this year).
Director Max Webster, who brought a sense of magic and fun to The Old Vic's productions of The Lorax and Cover My Tracks, leads this charming production, featuring integrated new music from former frontman of folk-pop band Noah and The Wale, Charlie Fink.
Updating the Shakespearian comedy with modern day garb (to match the modern day songs) and setting the tale amidst beautiful scenery brings fresh life to this well-worn drama.
An outstanding performance from Olivia Vinall (proving she's much more than the two hapless, brow-beaten women she played in The Woman in White) brings spice and humour to the show. Vinall is our young Rosalind, the woman with whom Orlando (Edward Hogg) has fallen in love with. She outwits Orlando by dressing as a boy, and teaching him how to woo.
The show is unquestionably quite long, but sitting outside in Regents Park Open Air Theatre, as the sky slowly bruises and transitions into night, is such an unexpected bonus that every second is a pleasure. (After all, Shakespeare expected his shows to be performed under an open sky).
Easy to follow, surprisingly funny and supported by a beautiful stage that gives us the snow of winter, the rains of spring and the florals of high summer, As You Like It at Regent's Park Open Air Theatre is a real treat on a summer evening.
|What||Pastoral comedy on alfresco stage|
|Where||Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park, Inner Cir, Westminster, London, NW1 4NU | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Baker Street (underground)|
06 Jul 18 – 28 Jul 18, 7:45 PM – 10:15 PM
|Price||£12.50 - £59|
|Website||Click here for more information and to book via Regents Park Open Theatre|