The Crown

The Crown
Alex as the Duke of Windsor

Friday, February 09, 2007

Into 2007

After a break down south the Alex Jennings news service is back on the road. The (old) news I've been able to gather so far:

Alex plays the part of Peer Gynt on a recently released recording of the play. The Guardian's Tim Ashley has the following review to offer:
"2007 marks the centenary of Grieg's death, and you'd be hard pressed to find a better tribute than this new recording of his most popular work. Unusually, it presents the incidental music in its entirety within the context of an abridgement of Ibsen's play, and throughout, you're acutely conscious not only of Grieg's astonishing inventiveness, but also of how Ibsen - finicky about the details of the score - understood exactly when to use music to enhance the drama and when to let it fall silent before the often shocking power of speech.

You have to put up with a few idiosyncrasies: the play comes in English, the vocal numbers in Norwegian; the songs are consequently delivered in an over-operatic manner by classically trained singers rather than allotted to actors as Ibsen and Grieg intended. But it's blazingly conducted by Guillaume Tourniaire. The first-rate cast includes Alex Jennings (an endearing, Irish-accented Peer), Haydn Gwynne (the women in his life) and Derek Jacobi (the various manifestations of the forces that mould his destiny). Funny, exhilarating and at times also unbearably sad, it's a remarkable achievement and very highly recommended."
Reference and review at:
The Guardian

Alex also appeared in a radio 3 play called "Two Men from Delft" on Sunday 4 February. The play was written by Stephen Wakelam. Alex played the part of Christiaan Huygens in a play about Antony Van Leeuwenhoek's discovery of bacteria. Stephen Tompkinson played the part of Van Leeuwenhoek. If you've missed it you can listen to the broadcast until 11 February on:
Radio 3

And on 14 and 15 January Alex appeared on "Waking the Dead", the BBC series, in the story called "Deus Ex Machina". He played the part of James Andrews. More information on this episode on the official BBC-website: Episode Guide Waking the Dead

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