The information on: 'Timon of Athens'

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The Independent Culture
What Is It?

Gregory Doran's witty, penetrating production of Shakespeare's unpopular drama about the dehumanising effect of money, is the first at Stratford for almost 20 years.

Who's In It?

Alan Bates, laid low by a chest infection, has been replaced in the title role by Michael Pennington. With Rupert Penry-Jones as Alcibiades and John Woodvine as the loyal steward. Richard McCabe is splendidly sardonic as Apemantus.

What They Say About It

"The excellence of Pennington's performance lies in the way he shows you the psychological continuities between the hero's apparently discrepant manifestations: the open-handed host in flowing robes and the loin-clothed outsider snarling like a wild animal," Paul Taylor, The Independent.

"Once Timon has taken his misanthropic turn, however, Pennington comes slightly unstuck. He over-employs that old Antony Sher trick of propelling a big speech upwards by using a rising cadence at the end of each line of verse," Matthew Sweet, The Independent on Sunday.

"I was not convinced by the bizarre jumble of Elizabethan and modern dress: it misses either any contemporary flavour or the obvious allusion to the notoriously profligate Jacobean court," Nigel Cliff, The Times.

Where You Can See It

Timon of Athens is at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford (01789 295623) to 9 October