This past week a couple fellow employees’ and I took a little trip to Straford in Ontario, Canada. We all work at the Shaw Festival (rivals I know) and we had won this little trip to go and see their rendition of “Camelot”. I thought I would write a little review about it because I think more people should attend live theatre far more often than most of the world does, I think it is just as fabulous opportunity to really dive into culture, and enjoy some of your favorite works by Shakespeare, Shaw, Tennessee Williams, etc.
Stratford’s “Camelot” is describe as “a gorgeous musical” with “score [that] gilds a legendary tale of idealism, passion and betrayal.” In my opinion yes the music was thriving and addicting, you couldn’t help but tap along with it, although the storyline was lacking in my opinion. It seemed that the music was not part of the story entirely, it seemed like it was something they added in sort of randomly. It did not seem like an actual musical where the musical numbers assist the storyline, not stop it, which is exactly how I felt about Camelot.
Don’t get me wrong it is a fabulous show very family orientated, with great affects such as, at the beginning they use a real falcon when Merlin turns the young Arthur into a bird, very exciting and impressing. There were battle scenes with great sword fights, and I personally loved the jousting scene, that is when the music really felt like it was part of the show. The romance between Arthur and Guinevere was exciting and romantic and obviously the romance between Lancelot and Gwen caused some strife with King Arthur and therefore his demise. It was your average story of Camelot although there was not a whole lot from the character Merlin. He was in the beginning but as the story goes, he was trapped by a Nymph who took his powers away and therefore could not warn Arthur of his future problems with Lancelot and his wife Gwen, which in turn caused the end of Camelot. The one thing I must say I was over the top impressed by was the theater and the stage. it was absolutely fabulous. Gorgeous set and props, very Celtic and medieval, it was just amazing, and it played well with the show and dance numbers as well. It all flowed together with vivid colors, of green, and golds, blues and red; with a lovely huge twisted tree in the center they used throughout the performance. I was overly impressed.
Over all I was not overly impressed by the performance but it is worth seeing. It is definitely not your average show, and you’ll find yourself singing a song or two on your way out.