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November 2013 | Webber Douglas Studio, Royal Central School of Speech & Drama

November 2013 | Derby Live

Too Clever By Half

Welcome to a dog-eat-dog world where a crafty, grasping and cut-throat rogues gallery of charlatans and hypocritical schemers vie to outdo one another in a dazzling tour de force of duplicity and unscrupulous ambition.

Written in the mid-19th century by the most prolific Russian social satirist Ostrovsky, this perennially fresh and hilarious comedy of bad manners focuses on our rogue-hero Gloumov as he claws his way from shabby obscurity to the top of the social pile, using whatever means he can and stepping on whoever is in his way in order to get there.

Staged in traverse, audiences were confronted with an image of themselves across the performance space. From the opening, with the raising of chandeliers and crucifixes to the flies, the spectacular scene changes played out behind theatrical footlights to the ultimate scene as the chandelier crashed onto the stage, the production was steeped in the theatrics of the 19th Century, all with a surreal twist.

Photos: Patrick Baldwin

Too Clever By Half RCSSD

The creatives

Writer - Alexander Ostrovsky

Version by Rodney Ackland

Director - Martin Parr

Designer - Bethany Morris

Sound Designer - Jamie Flockton

Musical Director - Wendy Gadian

Voice Coash - Annie Morrison

The cast

Kleopatra Ilvovna Mamaev - Emily Cairns

Mashenka - Georgina Castle

Yegor Vassilitch Kourchaev - Rob Dowdeswell

Neel Fedoseitch Mamaev - Ben Eagle

Kroutitsky - Lloyd Green

Styopka / Babushka / Gregoria - Killian Macardle

Golutvin - Christian James

Lubinka - Felicity Jolly

Matriosha - Samantha Lund

Ivan Ivanovitch Gorodoulin - Matt Mella

Maniefa - Anne O'Riordan

Glafira Gloumova - Paige Round

Ignatievna Tourousina - Tamara Saffir

Yegor Dimitrich Gloumov - Samuel Townsend

Sofia Tourousina - Laura Trundle

Klimovna Gloumova - Louise Young

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