Friday, November 02, 2012

'Medea' by Euripides: a new version by Mike Bartlett

2 November 2012

On Saturday we were at the Watford Palace Theatre to see Mike Bartlett’s new contemporary version of ‘Medea’ by Euripides (a Watford Palace, Headlong and Citizens Theatre, Glasgow joint production). After a hectic week at work I wasn't sure I was really in the mood for Greek tragedy but this was a very witty, tragi-comic ‘Medea’ which preserved all the original elements (right through to the inevitable, bloody conclusion) while creating a really enjoyable, and often very funny, piece of theatre. This didn't feel like ancient characters merely transplanted into a modern setting but a very believable 21st century domestic drama. Rachael Stirling was great in the title role – simultaneously distraught, disturbed, angry, clever, witty and self-aware. And a special mention should also go to the wonderful life-size doll’s house set (by Ruari Murchison) with its sliding walls revealing each of the rooms of Medea’s home in turn.

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