OK, it was actually in Shakespeare Uncovered, a six-part miniseries that originated on the BBC that combines “history, biography, iconic performances, new analysis and the personal passions of its celebrated subject” (so says the PBS website). I watched the first two eps in the wee hours of the morning, with Ethan Hawke focusing on Macbeth and Joely Richardson (with able assistance from her mother, Vanessa Redgrave) hosting an hour devoted to some of Shakespeare’s comedies. I very much enjoyed both–lots of food for thought and wonderful to see so many of my favorite actors emoting the Bard’s timeless words– and have them DVRed so I can revisit when I like.
My fellow Americans should check your local PBS listings if you want to join in on viewing this impressive series.
The first ep with Hawke featured snippets of various filmed and televised performances from over the years, including the Antony Sher production for the RSC with Richard playing the role of Angus. The blog post I recently did on RA with a compilation of his clips is linked below (“RA in the Scottish Play“) if you happened to miss it.
I admit I squeed with delight when I saw that handsome bearded young man in military costume seated at the table and had to share the moment whilst chatting on Twitter at 1:30 a.m. Yep, should have been asleep. Downton Abbey sort of put a kibosh on that (as mentioned in previous post, not a cheery ep).
He’s gone from the background to the forefront, and I am so very, very proud of him. More handsome, more confident, more charismatic than ever and such an amazing talent that goes from strength to strength. It’s wonderful to look back and to ponder what may lie ahead for my favorite actor.
Richard in screencaps from the televised production of RSC’s Macbeth filmed at the Roundhouse Theatre. Caps courtesy of Richard Armitage Central.
- RA in the Scottish Play: Video Clips (thearmitageeffect.wordpress.com)
- TV Friday: Ethan Hawke takes on Shakespeare’s Macbeth (o.canada.com)
- You: PBS series ‘Shakespeare Uncovered’ to dig deep into Bard’s plays (latimes.com)
- Jeremy Irons Talks about “Shakespeare Uncovered” on PBS (jeremyirons.net)