The Real Thing

Next show from the Richmond Shakespeare Society is Sir Tom Stoppard’s theatrically pyrotechnical The Real Thing, an extraordinary semi-autobiographical play by turns hilarious and touching, and uncannily blurring stage illusion with real life.

Successful playwright Henry is married to actress Charlotte, but is in a secret liaison with another actress, Annie, who is married to actor Max. Ultimately their affair will wreck both marriages.

Director Simon Bickerstaffe says: "Beware. Nothing is as it seems. Gone are Stoppard’s contrivances and implausibility. It’s a play about real people, and highly prescient, as he left his second wife for Felicity Kendal, who played Annie during its first run in 1982 — a real case of life imitating art.

“The side-splitting wit, the speed, the sub-text, the subtle stresses, the express scene changes, the alliteration, the intellectual breadth of the work will strrrrrrrretch the cast almost to breaking, but delight audiences who like their theatre razor sharp, full of wit and deeply thought provoking.”

The highly experienced cast includes Francis Abbott as Henry, Sue Baxter as Annie, Maxina Cornwell as Charlotte and Ciaran Hassett as Max.

The Real Thing runs from Sat 29th March to Sat Apr 5th, (no show Wed) at 7.45pm with matinees at 4pm on Sunday Mar 30th and 3pm on Saturday Apr 5th. Tickets £8 or £10.

The RSS is a Club Theatre, and tickets may only be sold to members. Tickets by post, or phone from Box Office, Mary Wallace Theatre, Embankment, Twickenham, TW1 3DU, 020 8744 0547, www.rss-mwt.org.uk Bookings must be secured by credit card, or by cash or cheque within three days. Membership enquiries 020 8940 1606, membership@rss-mwt.org.uk.