Shakespeare plays are a popular feature of the NUTS repertoire; and in Joe Sample and Caroline Simonsen’s creative and accessible interpretation of The Tempest, it is easy to see why.
Making it so accessible was a combination of engaging performances, a creative set and the clever use instruments (accompanied by the beautiful voice of Beatrice Henderson). Stewarding this performance from beginning to end was Chris Theobald in a truly captivating performance as Prospero; bringing sharp wit to dialogue-heavy scenes, contrasting it expertly with intense passion in the monologues. Matching this intensity pound for pound was Nicholas Pople as the monstrous Caliban. And while the pacing occasionally lagged in the absence of Prospero or Caliban, this did not detract from what was a very polished performance.
Recognition is due also for Bailey Pilbeam for a charming performance as Ferdinand and for Kassie Hopewell for her ethereal portrayal of Prospero’s “trixie spirit” Ariel. Furthermore, this review would be incomplete without a recognition of the moments of comedy handled expertly by the dynamic duo of Trinculo (Saroj Spickett) and Stephano (Tim Spalding).