Saturday, 13 November 2010

Mary Stuart by Schiller via Andrew Cowie

Schiller's "Maria Stuart" - in a modern English version as Mary Stuart, the Scottish Queen executed under Elizabeth I after years of imprisonment.
Intriguing to see a German take on part of the English myth: the strong virgin Queen as being pressured by ruthless and calculating Burleigh (a Mandelson of his day?) and the mob outside into signing her cousin Mary's death warrant. Mary as a passionate, charismatic Catholic leader; both tested by their passions and conviction of power. Ultimately, for one to live, the other dies - and neither Protestant nor Catholic can avoid complicity in the Realpolitik and the abuse of religion to justify false charges, torture, judicial murder and the evasion of responsibility by the monarch for all of these.
With a deliberate parallel to machinations around the launch of the Iraq War under Blair and Bush, with the now late Robin Cook's resignation speech in an eery voice-over.
At the Crescent Theatre in Birmingham, 09/11/10.

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