Mary Stuart

It was a late, though satisfying night of theatre at The Ensemble. Colin and I went to see “Mary Stuart”, a play written in the eighteenth century by a German playwright (though recently updated) about the conflict between Elizabeth and Mary about who should be Queen of England.

It was a really good production, well-directed, and with a really great cast which included Greta Scaachi as Queen Elizabeth. Interestingly, the character was far more fragile, far more inclined to uncertainty than the likes of Cate Blanchett or Glenda Jackson who’ve previously played Elizabeth. Kate Raison, a regular face around The Ensemble played Mary, the Catholic sister who felt she was far more entitled to the throne, and who was imprisoned for nineteen years.

Apparently there’s a fair bit of literary licence in the play, with suggestions Elizabeth and Mary never met, and a lot of questions about the historical accuracy of the play. For me, that stuff doesn’t really matter, as I thought it was a well conceived and enacted piece of theatre.

One of the additional highlights of the night was a half-hour “Question and Answer” session after the play with the director and cast. In a fairly informal manner (some were wearing shorts and thongs), the cast sat around answering questions from the audience in a highly articulate, though often humorous manner.

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