When Director David Hovatter asked me to play Belvile in Aphra Behn’s The Rover I jumped at the chance. I had seen some of David’s Crucial Image shows before and knew that he works in a very collaborative and fresh way. David writes in his Director notes:
What would Walt Disney do? On being told I was to direct Aphra Behn’s restoration comedy about Civil War Cavaliers on the razzle in a foreign country, this seemed to me a perfectly reasonable question to ask.
Since David had also seen my Music Direction and playing for Caucasion Chalk Circle he also asked me to take on Music Direction for The Rover.
After a sell out run of the play in Ealing during April we then took the show to Minack Theatre in Cornwall. The show received a very favourable press review.
Director David Hovatter, who also plays Sancho, moves the action from Naples to Venice at carnival time which opens the door to all manner of fantasy and fun. With the help of a quartet of step ladders, a pair of pedalos-cum-gondolas, and a single guitar, splendidly and amusingly played by Andy Wolfe (Captain Belvile), he gives us a couple of highly entertaining Venetian hours that live up to his claim of having distilled Aphra Behn’s comedy into “a fast-paced physical piece of theatre.
Later this year we had the opportunity to take The Rover to the International Theatre Festival in Slovenia.