I, Elizabeth

Dyad Productions

Lichfield Garrick

*****

A CHAIR and side table set in front of the arras were all that were required to transport us back to an atmospheric privy chamber in 1568.

Rebecca Vaughan as Queen Elizabeth I held the audience spellbound with her magnificent portrayal of the Tudor monarch.

Her personal struggle, insecelizabethurities and doubts were laid bare as the whole gamut of emotions poured from a performance that was more than worthy of the generous ovation given by a very appreciative audience.

Elizabeth reigned for 44 years, inheriting the crown in 1558 at the age of 25, and although she appeared strong and determined, her personal anxieties plagued her. None so much as the question of who should follow after her death and take the throne, and the even bigger problem of who or when she would marry in order of providing a legitimate heir.

Elizabeth's own legacy of letters, speeches, poems, prayers and other writings, as well as many recorded conversations with ambassadors and Privy Councillors were used to script this dramatic piece and they reveal the fiery, intelligent woman, yet often given to procrastination and fits of weeping.  

The political struggles and challenges of religion and war seem strangely paralleled in today’s world, as we see Elizabeth tormented by the difficulties of maintaining the security of her beloved people and balancing her personal needs with the demands of her advisors and politicians.

Vaughan’s ability to sustain and deliver such a huge amount of dialogue in a single monologue was a privilege to witness.  No mean task on a hot, stuffy summers eve whilst wearing a constrictive, heavy Tudor costume, but the very talented Vaughan was utterly convincing in every aspect.  An excellent performance by a fine actress.  So much better than any History lesson.

‘I may not be a lion but I am a lion’s cub’

Directed by Guy Masterson, Elizabeth reigns to 10 June.

Rosemary Manjunath and Elizabeth Smith

09-06-16

See Dyad Productions website for more dates http://www.dyadproductions.com/production-tour-dates.php 

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