The WaterMill Ensemble’s Twelfth Night


“If music be the food of love, play on…”

A review by Abigail Kathleen

Twelfth night is the story of Viola and Sebastian, twins separated during a tragic shipwreck. Believing Sebastian lost Viola re-invents herself as the gentleman, Cesario, in her portrayal of a gentleman she finds herself tangled up in a love triangle. Viola falls for Duke Orsina, who is madly in love with Countess Olivia, Countess Olivia falls for Cesario, unknowing he is actually a she, Viola.

The WaterMill Theatre has taken Shakespeare’s comedy and brought the story to life in a new era. Set in a 1920’s jazz scene, the cast are not just the actors, they are also the musicians, they all play musical instruments with perfection, hit the right notes when they sing and deliver a flawlessly funny performance of their characters, they are insanely talented!

The audience was left amazed and involved, the woman to left of me sung her heart out and the gentleman to my right found himself laughing out loud throughout the performance. The first act was a lengthy 90 minutes, so when the interval arrived I was very grateful for the opportunity to get up and explore the venue.

The production is currently on tour and is at Wilton’s Music Hall until the 22nd September. Wilton’s music hall is a hidden gem in East London that bursts with history and culture, as I had gone straight from work my phone was on minimal charge so I didn’t get to capture the beauty of the venue to share with you, so I fully recommend grabbing tickets to see Twelfth night whilst they are still at the Wilton until the 22nd.

The cast left the audience in delight, they delivered a fantastic performance and had us wanting more musical performances. The highlight for me was Malvolio’s performance of Lorde’s hit Royals and watching him strut his stuff in his yellow stockings and gold glitter left me in tears of laughter!

Fabulous play, fabulous cast, 10/10 from me! Photo Credit: Matt Crosswick