Barrington Stage Company, Pittsfield, MA
Gertrude and Claudius, by Mark St, Germain, based on the novel by John Updike. Directed by Julianne Boyd. Reviewed by J. Peter Bergman.
"I have been told that a wife completes a man. This Amleth seems complete already."
This is just an example of what's wrong in the marriage of a Princess who will become a Queen and a prince who is destined to be a King. Their political lives can't take them anywhere and their attraction is mostly one-sided, though she grows to love the man and to cherish him. He, however, is a jealous man and he suspects his adventurous, ardent and amiable younger brother of more than mere filial devotion to his bride. Though the brother does protest too much, it is pretty clear that he finds the new wife to be very attractive, and so she is. And so it goes. . .for over thirty years when the wrong romance begins to heat up and grow out-of-control. This play is episodic and has a romantic second act while the first act is fascinating for its history of the kingdom, the conquests and the love-affair though it really doesn't exist yet. It's rather like a pot on a back-burner, heating up slowly.