Eric Kibler's Reviews > Twelfth Night

Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare
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Jun 27, 12

Read in June, 2012

I reread the play as I'll be appearing in it this summer as Sir Toby Belch. Ah, what fun!

Shakespeare fact: most directors these days cut Shakespeare's plays down to a reasonable two hours for performance. That will be the case for the production I'm in. I'll miss the double-talk conversations between Sir Toby and the Clown, and some of the "mistaken identity" humor involving male/female twins Sebastian and Viola. Although I can see why the director removed this stuff. In the former case, the invented references to phony experts like "Qeuebus" (God, would I have loved saying "Qeuebus"!) would have been indistinguishable from other archaic references, thereby causing confusion to the average theater goer. In the latter case, the humorous situations are often repetitive.


Cutting Shakespeare is nothing new. David Garrick, an actor and director who was a friend of Samuel Johnson, used to do it routinely in the 18th century.
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