The London Merchant, a play about two dysfunctional families begins. But suddenly, from the audience, a grocer and his wife clamber onto the stage, explaining to the astonished actors that while they quite like the play, it could be better and more exciting. Apparently, singing, dancing, an exotic foreign location and the appearance of a knight are the missing ingredients. Luckily, their apprentice Rafe is just the man for the job.
Director Declan Donnellan and designer Nick Ormerod collaborate with Moscow’s Pushkin Theatre on Francis Beaumont’s subversive play within a play. The Knight of the Burning Pestle is a breathtaking comedy, hilarious and terrifying in its relevance to a post-expert world where everyone can be famous and anyone can write the story.
Performed in Russian with English surtitles
Age Recommendation: 16+
Deliriously enjoyable Russian language version of the raucous metafarce
A pair of Lion King fans blunder into a highbrow drama in Declan Donnellan’s gallant update of the class-collision comedy
This show makes you feel good and I could not stop smiling during the whole performance and all evening after
A condensed, updated version of this ahead-of-its-time meta-comedy that is audacious and bewitching, at least for a while
A wonderful, mad night, which manages to bring a dusty, difficult play back to full theatrical vividness
Cultural sabotage of the wittiest kind
The star of the show is Agrippina Steklova: she milks its emotional moments and plays with shameless skill on the artificiality of the main premise
The Knight of the Burning Pestle is a joy to watch as well as a proper belly laugh in all its eccentricity and cheek
Cheek by Jowl's entertaining Russian-language update of Beaumont's metatheatrical comedy