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Thank you, Elise, for the invitation to join this community. I… - The Pillowman [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Official LJ Appreciation for The Pillowman

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[Mar. 12th, 2005|11:00 am]
Official LJ Appreciation for The Pillowman

the_pillowman

[my_own_petard]
Thank you, Elise, for the invitation to join this community. I suspect I’ll mostly be an observer. I rarely find the time to post or comment in LJ, though I do try to keep up with the reading of it.

Like you, I was captivated and haunted by The Pillowman. Unlike you, however, the production I attended had David Tennant as Katurian, Jim Broadbent as Tupolski, Nigel Lindsay as Ariel, and Adam Godley as Michal. Apparently Victoria Pembroke and Mike Sherman were in the productions each of us saw, though.

It is so very difficult for me to imagine anyone but the actors I experienced taking on these roles—just as you probably find it difficult to imagine any but those you saw. (And how very interesting that you met them afterwards. You really should tell more about that.)

But while on the subject of casting, I must say I am somewhat dubious of the choices made for the New York production of the play. Well, one choice, perhaps; I am not so familiar with the other actors. Jeff Goldblum as Tupolski?! If it was absolutely necessary to even cast him in this play, I would likely have at least considered him for Katurian, not Tupolski. (Although, I must admit, perhaps he is a bit too old for Katurian.)

Still, as I said when I discovered the choices made in the casting of the New York production of Michael Frayn’s Democracy (choices which utterly horrified me), I could very well be proven wrong and the chosen actor/actors actually turn in a fine performance/performances. (Alas, in the case of Democracy, judging by the reviews, I was absolutely correct regarding the miscasting of it. And if truth be told, I certainly have more faith in Goldblum as Tupolski than I ever had in Richard Thomas as Günter Guillaume or James Naughton—who looked much more like a used car salesman than the charismatic and conflicted chancellor—as Willy Brandt.)

Anyway, once again, thank you for the invitation. I am looking forward to reading what others have to say about the play—the poetry and prose of it, the production and performance of it, the characters and characterizations, the stories within the story, the darkness and light.

Alcina
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: mizzliz83
2005-03-13 12:25 am (UTC)
I saw the version with Lee Ingleby as Katurian, but spent the whole play thinking "he reminds me of David Tennant." It was only after I got home from seeing the play that I remembered David played him in the original, which I guess shows how well suited they both were for the role.

As for Jeff Goldblum as Tupolski, does seem rather a strange choice, but rather him as Tupolski than Katurian.
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[User Picture]From: my_own_petard
2005-03-13 01:23 am (UTC)
Actually, you're probably right. I tend to picture Goldblum how he was long ago: young and somewhat eccentric; hence, the envisioning of him as an artist, a writer. He's not so much these days, though, I suppose. So yes. Between Katurian and Tupolski, he’s probably now more suited for Tupolski.

Still, as you pointed out, strange choice. Certainly not who I would have chosen.

How very interesting that the actor you saw as Katurian reminded you of David Tennant. That, perhaps, shows that some roles can call for certain "types." Unfortunately, this sometimes gets lost in translation when the production migrates to the U.S. There have been times I’ve wondered if The Powers That Be who make the choices for the U.S. productions have a true understanding of the play and/or its characters—whether fictional or historical—indeed, have even read the same play I have. (Again, Democracy comes to mind in this regard.)
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[User Picture]From: mizzliz83
2005-03-13 01:00 pm (UTC)
Unfortunately, this sometimes gets lost in translation when the production migrates to the U.S. There have been times I’ve wondered if The Powers That Be who make the choices for the U.S. productions have a true understanding of the play and/or its characters—whether fictional or historical—indeed, have even read the same play I have.

Sometimes it seems as though they're more interested in getting a "big name" into the play rather than getting someone who's right for the role.
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[User Picture]From: my_own_petard
2005-03-13 01:40 am (UTC)
Ah, missliz83. Apologies for straying from the topic of The Pillowman, but I just visited your LJ and saw that you have photos up from the National's His Dark Materials. Were you able to see that as well? Wasn't it lovely?
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[User Picture]From: mizzliz83
2005-03-13 12:59 pm (UTC)
I love HDM! Yeah I saw the original version once and the revival twice, I prefered the revival though. It was an amazing piece of theatre.
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