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First produced in May 1956, in the midst of the Cold War, the theme is a variation on Romeo and Juliet, with Romeo the son of the Soviet Ambassador and Juliet the daughter of the American Ambassador. The scene is a small neutral country "cringing in the centre of the political arena, in economy largely dependent on printing stamps with deliberate anomalies." The near-traditional love story is interspersed with elements of comedy and farce that reflect Ustinov's brilliant use of language and eye for the ridiculous. The political message nevertheless remains.
All this gives us a frivolous play of substance, an entertainment, and plenty to talk about afterwards. Co-directed by Joan Nordlund and Angie Hämäläinen.
Peter Ustinov (1921-2004) was well known for his role in the film Spartacus, and as Hercule Poirot. There was a lot more to him than that. He was a prolific writer and dramatist, a respected television and film director, and with his multi-ethnic background was a tireless worker for UNICEF and the UN. Of his work as a UN Ambassador he said: "My God, I spend my time in America trying to explain the Russians to them to the best of my ability and I spend my time in Russia trying to explain the Americans to them. Despite their fiscal and military collusion, they understand each other not at all."
Venue: Narri Näyttämö, Hietaniemenkatu 9 C
Saturday 1st April at 19:00
Sunday 2nd April at 14:00 & 19:00
Saturday 8th April at 14:00 & 19:00
Sunday 9th April at 14:00 & 19:00