Original casting by Crocodile Casting
With Tom Rooke as the King and Windsor family lookalike Barbara Bone as the Queen Mother, I spend a splendid and sunny three days with old friends from Russia’s Richard Tea, Park Productions and The Brownie Film Company. Mostly we swan about Lisbon or sit sipping beverages on the hotel balcony overlooking the port, but occasionally our presence is required at some palatial location and so we feel we must put in an appearance.
Tom has the hardest job being coerced by leonine director Alejandro Toledo into saying “Mmm, Richard” with more sleepy, sexual nuances than he thought possible; at the same time he must gaze appreciatively at his beautiful (and on this occasion Portuguese) wife, sneer at his butler, ignore his baby, wave patronisingly at the crowds below the balcony and look yearningly at his cup of Richard tea. Multitasking or what? Meanwhile, I buttle around in a rather ill-fitting cozzie (Father not pleased with the over-long white waistcoat) and indulge the client with a reprise of my eyebrow-acting, for which talent, much thanks. Outside the palace a hundred Portuguese walk-ons impersonate the Russian hoi-poloi whilst shouting English in faux-Victorian costumes.
An eccentric production, but unmissable, and my thanks to director Alejandro Toledo, Leonid, Nadia, Alex and Dmitri for a great deal of bad behaviour and tears of mirth.