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The Tempest

Date

2nd August 2013

Society

Eastbourne Operatic & Dramatic Society

Venue

The Italian Gardens Eastbourne

Type of Production

Play

Director

Gareth Brighton

Report

Author: Brenda Gower

A magical evening in a magical setting - what more could a theatre goer want?  The cleverly designed staging needed no backdrop as the sea (albeit the Englaish Channel) provided this and we were at once transported to Prospero's island.  The storm that threw the King of Naples and his companions into the sea was well contrived with the experienced actor Mike Barber conjuring up the tempestuous weather and giving a very strong performance as Prospero throughout.  Zoe Holmes was a very pleasing Miranda acting so well with the other members of the cast, particularly Ferdinand (played by James Collins) who was the ideal young hero.  A truly magical perforfmance from David Fricker as Ariel - his tricks were carried out to perfection and he floated around as if truly on wings.  A really strong performance from Richard Lock as Caliban - he certainly was appropriately deformed and savage.  The arrival of Alonso, Antonio and Sebastian from the wreck added quite a sinister note.  The four were played with expertise by Tony Bannister, Neil Sellman, Pav Sysiak and Bryan Ayres.  The comedic part of the evening was also excellent - such a shame that James Bell was indisposed but Director Gareth Brighton gave a super performance as Stephano, "a boisterous butler!"  A superbly drunken pairing with Nick Carn as Trinculo the court jester, with Trinculo getting a wetting twice from the water in the cunningly arranged set.  A very interesting programme - so good to read about the magical help given by Paul Daniels, the profile on Felicity McGarrigle, responsible for the delicious refreshments and the article on how it all happens in the Italian Gardens - so much hard work involved.  Thank you EODS for another evening of Shakespeare in that lovely setting and congratulations to Director Gareth Brighton and everyone involved in producing such a fine theatrical experience for your appreciative audiences.