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Review: Romeo and Juliet at Canterbury's Gulbenkian Theatre

The initmacy of the Gulbenkian Theatre in Canterbury made it the ideal venue for a hugely-engaging performance of the timeless Romeo and Juliet.

This was an exciting and fresh production by Custom/Practice and the Newbury Corn Exchange team 

The dance sequences, predominantly street dance, were wonderful to watch and were made all the more exquisite by their thrilling proximity to the audience, particularly the realistic fight sequences.

Romeo and Juliet at the Gulbenkian
Romeo and Juliet at the Gulbenkian

The choreography underpinned a production full of young, powerhouse performances.

Michelle Cornelius as the nurse was able to combine movement and emotion to conjure up moments of flirtatious comedy and tragedy in the right measure.

David North as Mercutio revelled in his opportunity to portray the raunchiness endemic in many of Shakespeare's plays, and Sam Patrick exploited the slapstick.

Arun Blair-Mangat as Romeo and Remmie Milner as Juliet in particular danced some wonderful pieces, embracing the audience in the joys and ultimate tragedy of their relationship, while Nathanael Campbell's Benvolio was the best friend we all would want.

Gianbruno Spena made a confident debut as a professional. As Paris, and favourite of old Capulet, he was destined never to be much liked by the audience.

The collaboration with the Olivier award-winning hip-hop dance company, Boy Blue, ensured a night of original yet quintessential Shakespeare.

Romeo and Juliet is at the Gulbenkian until Wednesday, October 1.

Visit the Gulbenkian's website here.

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