The Icing

Thoughtful and stylish, The Winter's Tale is a play for all seasons.

Former Royal Shakespearean Tony Church lends authority and insight to the difficult role of Camillo, a courtly hanger-on who gets more second chances in life than one might think possible. Moore is a delight as the "Halloo!"-ing bumpkin whose heart is only slightly tarnished by the arrival of newfound riches, and Rubald carefully chooses opportunities to earn laughs that a lesser actor would take pains to milk. Westenberg locates a father's ambivalence about his son's choices without turning the poorly written part of Polixenes into a caricature. Koob makes an attractive "queen of curds and cream," occasionally revealing an instinct for feistiness that seems inherited from her regal mother, and while he's more ingratiating than dashing, Shea's Florizel is appealing enough. Along with the efforts of a solid supporting cast, who play everything from robed clerics to dancing nymphs to haughty party guests, Williamson's artful touches brilliantly evoke Shakespeare's twilight observations about "unpath'd waters" and "undream'd shores."

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