Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall

                                      "They say, best men are moulded out of faults,
                                        And, for the most, become much more the better
                                        For being a little bad."

And so to the theatre. I have been to London yet again and it goes without saying that my journey was made significantly worse than it needed to be by the incompetence of Virgin East Coast, which resulted in me being so late that I missed a big chunk of why I went in the first place. However, I suspect that you're even more bored than I am with all that so I shall swiftly move on.

It was to the Globe that I went to forget my disdain for beardy Branson and to watch a very enjoyable production of Measure for Measure. This is obviously one of Shakespeare's dodgier plays (I believe that to be the term commonly used in literary criticism) and is perhaps difficult for modern audiences. It's very hard to understand the motivation of anyone among the leading characters (Mariana in particular needs her head examining), or to navigate the path the playwright is weaving through the hypocritical sexual morals of the time. As expected, the Globe - which I enjoy more and more each time that I visit it - takes full advantage of the comic potential with Elbow, Barnadine and Lucio all outstanding (and I do realise that the first two are played by the same actor). The performance was being filmed and I'd urge everyone to catch when it's released; you'll just have to hope they somehow edit out the noise of the helicopter circling during the big scene between Angelo and Isabella.

Bob Dylan wrote a song addressing the same dilemma as that which forms the heart of the plot of Measure for Measure. One of this blog's few readers is a Tom Russell fan - as well as being the world's champion thrower of ones at the wargames table - so here's a cover version by the man from God knows where:

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