I do not know one person who hasn’t liked the current National Theatre’s production of Othello in London. Rory Kinnear as Iago and Adrian Lester as Othello were perfect casting.
What is so good is that both men play these men as ‘everyman’ – there are aspects of both whom we can identify with. Othello stands strong and is great at holding other peoples’ situations together:
but when it comes to holding his own when he is falsely led, he is less controlled. By the end he has positively lost control:
A man such as Iago, whom Othello should see through, is someone who upsets him so much so that Othello makes the terrible mistake of losing his authority to him. When you think about it, this is an extremely realistic situation – the steadfast person with the strong heart, deep soul and value-led conscience, is the person most likely to be influenced by the fickleness of life and people. The harder we love, the harder we hurt others, and ourselves.
Adrian Lester is one massive presence on a stage or screen. He is an awesome actor with a big singing voice too and his exposure of the characters he is playing – whether as Othello in Othello or as Bobby in Sondheim’s ‘Company’, are a sight and sound to behold:
As he sings ‘Being Alive’ he reminds us, both as Adrian Lester and as the characters he plays, what it is to be alive.