Review: Twelfth Night at Sheffield’s Crucible Theatre

Brian Protheroe as Feste, Hugh Ross as Malvolio and Rebecca Johnson as Olivia (L-R) in Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare at The  Sheffield Theatres and English Touring Theatre
Brian Protheroe as Feste, Hugh Ross as Malvolio and Rebecca Johnson as Olivia (L-R) in Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare at The Sheffield Theatres and English Touring Theatre

Twelfth Night is a play about being in love. In Jonathan Munby’s production at Sheffield’s Crucible, love is signalled by flurries of confetti petals, which carpet the stage through most of the second half.

It takes place in a kind-of 1930s setting, with shabby-chic décor, bursts of Irish rock music, and several unlikely uses for a wardrobe!

The broad comedy is safe in the hands of David Fielder and Milo Twomey as a drunk Sir Toby Belch and striped-blazer-clad hooray Henry Sir Andrew Aguecheek, ably abetted by Doňa Croll as a feisty Maria.

Olivia (Rebecca Johnson) raises a smile or two as she bursts out of her buttoned-up mourning when she falls headlong for Cesario, who is really a girl. And clever wordplay is the province of Feste the jester (Brian Protheroe, who shows himself to be a talented musician too.)

Hugh Ross is a starchy Malvolio, who retains his dignity to the end as he is mercilessly tormented for his lack of humour.

This solid, workmanlike production runs until October 18.

LYNNE PATRICK