Theatre Visits (1963)


By D. C. DODD, M6A

This year a number of visits were arranged by the English staff for members of the Arts Sixth. Naturally we saw some plays by the Stratford Bard two of them at the Memorial Theatre itself (with its genuine mock-Elizabethan stage).

We saw "King Lear" at this theatre. The production as a whole was loudly praised by the critics of the "heavy" Sunday papers, and in particular the performances of Paul Scofield as Lear, and Alec McCowen as the Fool. We found the presentation starkly impressive, aided as it was by the structurally simple properties and scenery, which did not distract the audience from the theme of the play.

When we saw Sheridan's "School for Scandal" we had the double treat of Sir Ralph Richardson and Sir John Gielgud in the main roles. The play was excellently produced by Sir John, and naturally this eighteenth century comedy was enjoyed by everyone.

The Globe Theatre was having a successful run with "The Private Ear and the Public Eye", starring Kenneth Williams as a highly entertaining detective in a garish suit of thick gold and brown stripes together with a screaming yellow tie. He looked like a huge, striped licorice allsort!

The St. Martin's Theatre was over-run with Irishmen and was presenting "Stephen D"-produced from two autobiographical works by James Joyce. The title role was played sensitively by Norman Rodway, who managed to resurrect upon the stage the running battle that was Joyce's life.

To see "The Comedy of Errors" we were trundled up to the birthplace of the Bard for the second time. The play, as before, was enacted in the same stark and effective stage idiom. The acting was superb, as was to be expected from the Royal Shakespeare Company

Another visit worth mentioning was to "Much Ado About Nothing", which we had the novel experience of seeing performed in the open-air theatre in Regent's Park. Full use was made of the natural surroundings-messengers did not merely walk on to the grassy stage, but they rode on horseback! Shakespeare alfresco, we found, made a pleasant change.


1963-64 School Magazine


Headmaster's Retirement


The Life Of Galileo (1965)

Visit to France (1957)