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Trump receives a bold touch from Shakespeare in the new play ‘The 47’ | Gob. & Politics

By JILL LAWLESS – Associated Press

LONDON (AP) – Run or not, that’s the question that worries Donald Trump at the beginning of Mike Bartlett’s “The 47,” a boldly Shakespearean version of recent and future American politics.

The title of the play, which is presented at the Old Vic Theater in London, refers to the next President of the United States. The plot depicts a high-profile 2024 election in which former Trump (45), President Joe Biden (46), Vice President Kamala Harris and Trump’s daughter Ivanka are key players.

The play begins with Trump retiring from Sea-to-Lake, eager to return to his role as disruptive boss, and asks if he could succeed and at what cost. It is not so much docu-fiction as a fantasy about power, democracy and populism.

The play is written in white verse deliberately resembling Bard and alludes to Shakespeare’s plots. One moment Trump is like King Lear, deciding which of his children deserves to succeed him; the next is Richard III, plotting to seize the crown.

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It is a technique that the British playwright Bartlett used earlier with powerful effect in “King Charles III”, his 2014 play that imagined a tumultuous future reign for the current heir to the British throne, Prince Charles.

“I loved the boldness and boldness of the play,” said actor Bertie Carvel, who offers a compelling and probably award-winning performance as Trump. “It’s a lot of fun and a lot of fun, but it’s definitely not a comedy.”

Nor is it “an ax job” for Trump, said Carvel, who played another powerful figure, media mogul Rupert Murdoch, in James Graham’s 2017 play “Ink.” In that play, he performed the feat of getting the public to support the billionaire tycoon as a brave helpless man.

He faces an even tougher challenge to play Trump, someone about whom few people are neutral. “I know, you hate me,” Carvel’s Trump half mocked, half mocked the audience in the opening scene.

Carvel says he’s a “defender” of all the characters he played, including the monstrous Miss Trunchbull in “Matilda the Musical” in London and New York, a cheating husband in the TV thriller “Doctor Foster,” and the guest at the dinner of the dead. live Banquo in the Joel Coen movie. movie “The Macbeth Tragedy”.

“You can put together a very worthy defense as a lawyer without necessarily believing that the person is innocent,” said Carvel, who will play British Prime Minister Tony Blair in the fifth season of “The Crown.”

“My job is to give things a real ring and create a credible, readable human being.”

He said Bartlett’s script “attributes Trump and Trumpism to a serious hinterland. And besides, I tried to make sure he had a serious emotional interior as well.”

In real life, the 44-year-old British actor looks nothing like Trump. On stage, the resemblance is striking. His first entry, rolling on stage in a golf cart, draws the audience’s breath away.

“What we wanted to achieve was to be able to put in front of the audience a version that could say, ‘Oh, it’s him,'” said Carvel, who credits costume designer Evie Gurney for the transformation with quilts, prostheses and a wig.

Lydia Wilson undergoes an equally compelling transformation into Ivanka Trump, with her perfect hair, elegant dresses, and stiletto heels. In the play, Ivanka is her father’s favorite daughter, the right wife and potential rival.

Wilson, who called Kate Middleton “King Charles III,” said she dressed up as Ivanka was a transformer.

“The first general rehearsal, I felt like I was getting into a Bentley or a Rolls-Royce,” Wilson said. “I said, ‘Oh, there she is.’

Wilson, whose credits include “Star Trek Beyond” and Kenneth Branagh’s Shakespeare film “All is True,” said he feels he is having a “silent conversation” with the audience every night about the Trumps.

“There’s the assumption that we know these people,” he said. “It’s fun to try and play with it.

“It’s different every night.”

London critics praised the cast, which also includes Tamara Tunie as a resilient Harris, but disagreed over the impact of the play. The Daily Telegraph found a “significant lack of substance” beneath the surface polishing, while The Guardian considered that we are “still too close to the Trump moment” to get a real view.

But The Times gave him “The 47th” five stars, praising him for “attacking the liberal and metropolitan crowd of Old Vic” by showing off Trump’s genius as well as his flaws.

“King Charles III” went from the small Almeida Theater in London to Broadway. Could he follow “The 47th” after his Old Vic career ended on May 28th? Carvel, who got a Tony Award nomination for “Matilda” and won a Tony for “Ink,” thinks it would be “exciting.”

“I think it would be electric to do it even closer to the center of the vortex,” he said.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, transmitted, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.

Trump receives a bold touch from Shakespeare in the new play ‘The 47’ | Gob. & Politics

Source link Trump receives a bold touch from Shakespeare in the new play ‘The 47’ | Gob. & Politics

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