First Encounter: Taming of the Shrew Grand Theatre, Blackpool review

Taming of the Shrew.
Taming of the Shrew.
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It won’t be the first time a bridegroom-to-be has turned up in Blackpool wearing a Superman outfit.

Maybe it’s the first, though, where ‘he’ was a she, and a leading member of the Royal Shakespeare Company at that.

It was all part of the cross-dressing and cross-cultural fun as the RSC hosted this First Encounter production of the Bard’s play about mismatched match-making.

The added twist here being that female actors take the male roles, while the males get the pick of the dressing-up basket.

It’s all part of the company’s three-year mission to tour productions to five regional theatres, and their local schools, in order to create a first experience of seeing Shakespeare live.

Whether it was your first encounter with these characters, or your umpteenth, little was lost in this rapid translation, and the region’s school pupils, in particular, have everything to gain from a ground-breaking relationship.

In the final year the Grand will create a Shakespeare Festival with schools, colleges, and the RSC.

This production runs until Saturday.

David Upton