My blog has quite a lot of posts about Samuel West (Julius Caesar, On Chesil Beach and Darkest Hour) and Charles Edwards (My Fair Lady Australian tour and Henry IX).

Wednesday, 16 January 2008

Charles Edwards - Theatre - The 39 Steps - Broadway (American Airlines Theatre) - reviews

* updated 29 January

Theater News Online
"The four hardworking actors do their part to make The 39 Steps a brisk, breezy entertainment..."

"...Agilely directed by Maria Aitken, the four actors all display style in abundance..."

New York Times
"...The performers largely avoid direct impersonation of the film’s cast members. The masterly Mr. Edwards, the one holdover from the London cast, isn’t reincarnating Robert Donat, the suave actor who created the part. Instead he’s channeling a whole tradition of gentlemanly but virile heroes...With its cast of four and a brick-wall-backed set, this show flies lightly into an ether of escapism, while its over-produced peers remain stuck leadenly on the ground."

USA Today
"...As Richard, Charles Edwards — who appeared in the original London production at the small but highly regarded Tricycle Theatre — looks and acts every inch the mock gentleman/hero..."

New York Post
"... Richard Hannay was the original square-jawed, tight-lipped English hero, who came from the British Empire and culminated in Bond - James Bond - and Bond's later spy inversion, Sir Michael Caine's Harry Palmer.

Today we see Bond as an action hero with an accent, while poor old Hannay is somewhat of a joke. And it's a joke handsomely played by Edwards, the one refugee from the London production, with just the right pipe-clenching sense of incredulity..."

Philadelphia Inquirer
"...Charles Edwards plays Richard Hannay, the everyday guy who is dragged into a spy adventure, and he's dashing and agile and always sure you know that this is all a joke..."

New York Daily News
"...Charles Edwards, reprising the role he originated in London's West End production, plays Richard Hannay, an innocent man drawn into a spy ring who's falsely fingered for murder. With an eyebrow in the cocked-and-locked position and a trim mustache, Edwards is 1930s period-perfect and terrifically droll as a Regular Guy in extraordinary circumstances...."

"...Charles Edwards dashingly embodies the suave hero, a Hitchcock prototype: the man wrongfully accused, who also pops up in Saboteur, North by Northwest, and many others. Here the hapless protagonist is Richard Hannay, a rootless chap who finds himself caught in a web of murder and intrigue..."

The Associated Press
"...Edwards, sporting a pipe and a caterpillar of a mustache, has a terrific square-jaw profile and looks great in designer Peter McKintosh's tweedy 1930s duds. And the man moves with considerable agility, much like Robert Donat in the original film, in which the [sic] debonaire Richard Hannay outwits a parade of assorted villains to foil a nefarious spy ring — and gets the girl to boot."

"...Stepping into Robert Donat's shoes as Richard Hannay, the unflappable, pipe-smoking hero with the pencil-thin mustache and flawless hair, Charles Edwards balances a brow perpetually knitted in earnest contemplation, a stiff upper lip and a determinedly set jaw with the slyest of double takes (he's the sole holdover from the London cast). In Edwards' perf, Hannay's anxiety in even the stickiest situations is always tempered by the character's vanity, poise, smug self-satisfaction and a hint of dimness..."

Hollywood Reporter/Reuters
"...The dapper Edwards, clad in a stylish tweed suit and arching his eyebrows to great comic effect, delivers a wonderfully droll comic performance as the desperate hero..."

"...Edwards, whose skillful projection of insouciance coupled with an unbridled patriotic verve supports the comedy’s irreverent intentions..."

Hartford Courant
"Edwards and Ferrin would fit into a Hitchcock film..Overall, it adds up to a highly amusing and inventive tour de force."

Talk Entertainment
"...[Richard Hannay is] superbly portrayed by Charles Edwards..."

Roundabout Theatre[link]
Charles Edwards - Theatre - The 39 Steps - American Airlines Theatre [link]
Charles Edwards - Theatre - The 39 Steps - Broadway 1|2
Charles Edwards - Theatre - The 39 Steps - Huntington 1|2|3
Charles Edwards - Theatre - The 39 Steps - Criterion 1|2|3|4|5
Charles Edwards - Theatre - The 39 Steps - Tricycle 1|2|3

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