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Twelfth Night logo

On-stage at the Duchess Theatre, Chatsworth Centre, West Gate, Long Eaton
Thursday 17th - Saturday 19th October 2013


Twelfth Night - one of Shakespeare's funniest and most accessible plays!
It's a comic and sometimes riotous play about mistaken identity and self deception.

You don't need to be a Shakespeare buff to get the knockabout physical comedy, and the excruciatingly funny comic situations. Long before Ayckbourne did it, Shakespeare was writing humour to make us squirm as well as laugh.

If you want to understand the plot before you come (but you probably won't need to) here's a summary - (remember it's a lot funnier on stage!!)

iola is shipwrecked on the coast of Illyria and she comes ashore with the help of a captain. She loses contact with her twin brother, Sebastian, whom she believes to be dead. Disguising herself as a young man under the name Cesario, she enters the service of Duke Orsino through the help of the sea captain who rescues her. Orsino has convinced himself that he is in love with Olivia, whose father and brother have recently died, and refuses to see any suitor until seven years have passed, the Duke included. Orsino then uses Cesario (Viola) as an intermediary to profess his passionate love before Olivia. Olivia however, believing Viola to be a man, falls in love with Cesario (Viola), while Viola has fallen in love with the Duke.

In the comic subplot, several characters conspire to make Olivia's pompous steward, Malvolio, believe that his lady Olivia has fallen for him. It involves Olivia's uncle, Sir Toby Belch; another would-be suitor, a silly squire named Sir Andrew Aguecheek; her servants Maria and Fabian and her fool, Feste. Sir Toby and Sir Andrew engage themselves in drinking and revelry, thus disturbing the peace of their lady's house until late into the night, prompting Malvolio to chastise them. Sir Toby famously retorts, "Dost thou think, because thou art virtuous, there shall be no more cakes and ale?" (Act II, Scene III) Sir Toby, Sir Andrew and Maria are provoked to plan revenge on Malvolio. They convince Malvolio that Olivia is secretly in love with him by planting a love letter, written by Maria in Olivia's hand, asking Malvolio to wear yellow stockings cross-gartered, to be rude to the rest of the servants, and to smile constantly in the presence of Olivia. Malvolio finds the letter and reacts in surprised delight. He starts acting out the contents of the letter to show Olivia his positive response. Olivia is shocked by the changes in Malvolio, who has seemingly lost his mind. She leaves him to the contrivances of his tormentors. Pretending that Malvolio is insane, they lock him up in a dark chamber. Feste visits him to mock his insanity, disguised as a priest, and as himself. At the end of the play Malvolio learns of their conspiracy and storms off promising revenge, but the Duke (Orsino) sends Fabian to pacify him.

Meanwhile, Sebastian (who had been rescued by a sea captain, Antonio) arrives on the scene, which adds confusion of mistaken identity. Mistaking Sebastian for Viola, Olivia asks him to marry her, and they are secretly married in a church. Finally, when Viola and Sebastian appear in the presence of both Olivia and the Duke, there is more wonder and confusion at their similarity. At this point Viola reveals she is a female and that Sebastian is her twin brother. The play ends in a declaration of marriage between the Orsino (Duke) and Viola, and it is learned that Sir Toby has married Maria.

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 Donna Jeays Viola
Donna Jeays
Lizzie O'Hara Olivia
Lizzie O'Hara
Celia Billau Maria
Celia Billau
 Rob Osmond Orsino
Rob Osmond
 Martin Holtom Sir Toby
Martin Holtom
 Stuart Round Sir Andrew
Stuart Round
Peter Renton  Malvolio/Sebastian
Pete Renton 
Mina Machin  Feste
Mina Machin  
Moya Magee  Fabian
Moya Magee
Adam Richmond  Antonio
Adam Richmond
 David Wilson Sea Captain/Priest
David Wilson 
 Bob Baron Valentine/2nd Officer
Bob Baron
 Janet Lomas Curio/1st Officer/Servant
Janet Lomas
Liz Turner Director
Liz Turner
 Moya Magee
Assistant Director
Moya Magee

 Riverside Drama Company