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Tim Minchin and pals perform Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead down under

Alice Jones' Arts Diary
  • @alicevjones

As the world awaits a follow-up to Matilda, Tim Minchin is busy in front of the footlights, starring in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead with the Sydney Theatre Company.

The play opened this month to good reviews and co-stars Minchin’s old best friends and flatmates Toby Schmitz as Guildenstern and Ewen Leslie as The Player.

Schmitz and Minchin have been friends since they were 15 years old and Schmitz starred in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers with Minchin’s sister.

The friends went on to study at the University of Western Australia together where they played in a cabaret duo and staged their first comedy night, Don’t Smoke and Eat Me Without Yul Brynner in 1996.

A year later, they starred in a student production of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, in the supporting roles of Hamlet and The Player. Minchin has long been obsessed with Tom Stoppard’s homage to Hamlet. Before he turned to comedy full-time, he played in a band called Rosencrantz; their songs included “Shag With The Stereo On” and “Not Going Anywhere”.

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