Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Robin Hood ready to launch Cannes - BBC News

Robin Hood ready to launch Cannes - BBC News
by external link on May 12, 2010
Robin Hood ready to launch CannesBBC NewsCate Blanchett and Russell Crowe will bring some red carpet glamour to the south of France later as Robin Hood opens the 63rd Cannes Film Festival. The latest retelling of the legendary outlaw, from director Sir Ridley Scott, is showing out of ...Cannes 2010 preview: 'A festival for our troubled times'The GuardianRobin Hood: First review of Ridley Scott film by Chris TookeyDaily...

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Royal Shakespeare Company to present major re-telling of Malory's great English epic - Morte d'Arthur

RSC to present major re-telling of Malory's great English epic

Le Morte D'Arthur

14 April 2010

Morte d'Arthur By Sir Thomas Malory in a new adaptation by Mike Poulton The legend of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table A New RSC Commission The Courtyard Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon Previews from 11 June and runs in repertoire until 28 August 2010 Press Night: Thursday 17 June 2010 at 7pm Box Office: 0844 800 1110,

Gregory Doran, the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Chief Associate Director, is to stage Mike Poulton's new version of Thomas Malory’s epic, Morte d’Arthur, the story of King Arthur’s attempts to unite his country. From the sword in the stone to the establishment of the Round Table and the quest for the Holy Grail,Morte d’Arthur traces the adultery of Lancelot and Guenever and ultimately the death of the ‘once and future king.’ Blending myth and magic, this is the first major re-telling of the cycle in the English language. Mike Poulton, who worked with Gregory Doran on the RSC’s production of The Canterbury Tales in 2005, has adapted Morte d’Arthur. ‘We’ve worked together long and hard to make this prose epic into a piece of theatre,’ said Doran. ‘Mike Poulton has used Malory’s text, but has been very clever at creating a modern dialogue whilst still retaining a sense of medieval dignity.’ Talking about why he wanted to stage Morte d’Arthur for the RSC, Gregory Doran said: ‘Malory wrote it whilst in prison during the time of the Wars of the Roses. It was printed by Caxton in 1485, and Shakespeare would have known of the work. ‘This epic has therefore been at the centre of our culture for over 500 years, and it’s a project that’s been around at the RSC for a long time. The director John Barton has done many workshops and explorations of the text over the years. I asked him about taking it one step further with a dramatization and he graciously said to me it was ‘completely impossible.’ That’s maybe why I’m trying to do it.’ ‘Also in the context of the recent history of the RSC, with its 2006/07 staging of Michael Boyd’s award winning Histories cycle, it seems appropriate to see a story which was written at the time these events were actually happening performed on the same stage.’ Gregory Doran has been developing the project with the RSC’s current ensemble for the past two years, and it is his first time directing them in a production this season. Sam Troughton is Arthur, with Forbes Masson as Merlin, Jonjo O’Neill as Launcelot and Kirsty Woodward as Guenever. The cast also includes: Joseph Arkley (Kay, Pellieas and Angel), David Carr (Leodegrance and Accolon), Dyfan Dwyfor (Lamorack, Percival and Lavaine), Noma Dumezweni (Morgan Le Fay), Christine Entwisle (Margawse), Mariah Gale (Lady of the Lake, Ettard and Elaine of Astolat), Gruffudd Glyn (Gareth), James Howard (Ector, Bernard of Astolat and Lionel), Richard Katz (Pellinor, Nacien and Cardinal), Debbie Korley (Nimue), Dharmesh Patel (Agravain), Peter Peverley (Mordred), Patrick Romer (Archbishop of Canterbury), David Rubin (King Uriens and Lucan), Oliver Ryan (Gawain), Simone Saunders (Queen Igraine and Lynet) and James Traherne (King Lot, Red Knight, Baudwin and Bedevere). Morte d’Arthur will be staged in three distinct acts over one evening. Katrina Lindsay has designed the production, with lighting by Tim Mitchell, music by Adrian Lee and movement by the RSC’s Head of Movement, Struan Leslie. Steve Tiplady, puppeteer and exponent of shadow puppetry has been brought in to evoke some of the magic in the piece. Composer Adrian Lee is a long time collaborator of Gregory Doran’s, and previously composed music for his productions ofMacbeth, Antony and Cleopatra and The Canterbury Tales. ‘What I love about Adrian,’ said Doran ‘is that he manages to create a real medieval sound with traditional instruments with something very wild thrown in too. And he’s using Joji Hirota, the amazing Japanese drummer who worked with us on Macbeth in 2001.’ In 2008 Gregory Doran directed Love’s Labour’s Lost and an award winning production of Hamlet with David Tennant in the title role. The latter he also directed as a film which was broadcast at Christmas on BBC2. His most recent production for the RSC wasTwelfth Night with Richard Wilson as Malvolio.

For further information and interviews, please contact Nada Zakula in the RSC press office on 01789 412622, 07831 766086 For regional interviews and press tickets please contact Dean Asker in the RSC press office on 01789 412660

April 2010

Notes to Editors:

• The RSC Literary Department is generously supported by THE DRUE HEINZ TRUST • Production photographs will be available from from 15 June 2010. • Tickets for the production range from £5 - £45 • Gregory Doran discusses his creative choices at a Director Talk on Wednesday 16 June (5.15pm – 6pm) at the Courtyard Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon. Tickets £5 • Post Show Talk Back on 26 June. Audience members can stay on after the show and put questions to the acting ensemble. • Sunday Brunch – Authoring Arthur on Sunday 27 June. A Round Table discussion looking at how the tales of King Arthur have been interpreted and reinvented through the ages by artists and writers. Brunch served from 10am to 11.30am, discussion at 1pm. Tickets £15 • Unwrapped on Saturday 10 July, 10am. Members of the Creative Team and Acting Ensemble demonstrate some of the skills that go into making the production. Tickets £5 •

Friday, 23 April 2010

Happy St. George's Day to everyone!!!

My friend Clark John Fenney wrote this beautiful epic poem for me, and I feel very honoured reading this poem, and gladly sharing it to everyone!!!!

St. George and the Dragon (For Edileide Brito)

This is my St Georges day,
And on it i will write a lay,
About fair Damosel Edileide
And the events that will be played.

Hailing from the island of Hy-Brasil
She is travelling still
But will dwelleth for a time in Albion
Where the mighty St George haileth from.

So it was on that day of rain and sun
The adventure had begun
And tears of rainfall are in her eyes
Caused by events strange and wild

He came from the North to slake his fill
To where the Southern dwellers dwell
Up upon a lonely crag
With elemental vision spied a hag

But she was not for him
Maiden food was only good for him
He took his flight into the night
And came upon a tower high and built with might

But there was no castle in sight
No protector to fight the fight
His prey was spotted, her fair hair
He would take her there.

If he be bold he could take her now
But he was cunning so he’d wait somehow
The spring night was a little bright
But guards let down at the coming of night

So he flew into the sky
Flying ever high and high
Swooping down out of the evening
His appetite was keening

She saw him coming not a jot
Brushing her hair atop the tower of Escalot
He stifled his raw that sneaky cad
Lest he make the Southern dwellers mad

But when he snatched her he let out a roar
Breathed fire from his lungs, it poured
Out into the errant night
And so he took again to flight

His cave was cold and dank and dark
There was no sign of a friendly skylark
Piles of treasure lay arounder
Sacrificed to this abhorred bounder

Edil felt the shock and awe
Of this invasive carnivore
But she bit her lip
Resolve set on, to hell with it!

For she knew he’d not yet taste flesh
This would be a harsh test
His desire for jewels and gold
Mere hunger overrode

Word got out of the kidnapping
While the Southerners were a napping
Two and two was put together
The clues were there – a flying creature without feathers

Who had been spotted far and near
He had been to here
And what were these inhabitants to do?
They had not a clue

But good fortune would find a way
For Holy St George was passing that way
A dragon slayer born and true
He would provide the egress, the wherewithal to

He resolved to track the wyrmling down
Divest him of maiden, treasure and stolen crowns
Defeat the dragon and rescue Edil,
He’d play the hand that fate would deal

The spoor of sin was everywhere
He found a lock of Edilaide’s hair
A discarded bracelet, a ring or two
But no shed blood – phew!

His stratagem was in his mind
He’d draw the creature outside
It did suit his fighting style
Room to manoeuvre, outsmart and get behind

Boldly approaching the wyrm’s foul lair,
In order to rescue the lady fair
He banged sword on shield and cried ‘Come hither’
And after a while the dragon did slither

Both opponents sized up the other
And Faustus the dragon thought he could smother
With flames this impudent mortal, first strike
But deftly aside parrying with shield George evaded as he might

Faustus did bellow
At this impudent fellow
Moved closer and lashed out with tail
But swiftly George dodged aside, and again the dragon did fail

He cried out in pain – a sword had bit deep
And Faustus retaliated with sharp pointy teeth
George had been blooded, was also in pain
But his mind was clear, in battle he’d been trained

Now both had suffered
They circled each other
Wary but not in retreat
Still both on their feet

But Faustus took to the air
To gain advantage of height there
And George did let fly his spear
It flew upwards seeking weak spot now clear

Dragon wounded again and weakened once more
He let fly with hot steam with a mighty roar
And this attack did find its mark
Filled lungs with poison but did not strike the heart

Sensing weakness now, Faustus knew somehow
His moment had come for the kill now
He swooped down to still choking George
And struck out with his gnarly claws

He sensed no ruse, no canny trick
George had recovered resilient as stone or brick
He plucked up his weapon
Said a prayer to Heaven

And struck the spot the spear had pierced before
And the dragon gave an almighty pained roar
St George had made his score
And the Demonborne Faustus would cry no more

But dragons are dragons and and danger when dead
Out of the wounds inflicted did the acid ichor bleed
The spray was wide and flowing fast
Could not be avoided a hopeless task

George cried out as it burned skin to a crisp
Eating through armour and melting it to a whisp
Brave George fell. Passed out through malady
But hope was here, here came the lady

Amongst the caves treasure was a healing balm
It worked its magic and made a cooling body warm
Bringing life back into him
St George would live again!

Here endeth this tale – a short summary
Edilaide returned home and in good company
St George his task accomplished here
Left to wander a land and cleanse more fear

And what of the lady from Hy-Brasil?
She recovered from her ordeal and is dwelling here still
Brushing her hair in the moonlight
Before retiring to sleep sweet dreams at night

Now no more rainfall in her eyes
She feared not threat from sky
And with calm repose did think of him
Thoughts of adventure and this godly man

A Hero who came and saved both soul and skin
Now left a-travelling
But in times of need she could call on him
- And the Hero would come again!

Clark John Fenney Friday, 23 April 2010, St George's Day Albion

Sunday, 4 April 2010