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18 October 2008 @ 09:24 pm
UK Vacation Days 7 & 8 - Stratford-Upon-Avon, England  
VERY early on Friday morning We said goodbye to Edinburgh, Scotland. It took two trains and about six and half hours to get to Stratford-Upon-Avon. Adorably, this is the room we are staying at in the bed and breakfast.
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We took it easy for the rest of the day and just sort of wandered around the town before retiring to our room for the night. Here are a couple of the photos we took.
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This is Shakespeare's birthplace.
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On Saturday morning we wondered a bit more to kill time before the plays were to start.

We found an open air market selling lots of fruits and vegetables. I, being the loyal fangirl that I am, just had to get a Satsuma at the outdoor market to kill any Sycorax that might appear see what it tasted like. I didn’t notice any difference from a regular mandarin orange.
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We stopped at the post office to buy Billy a fishing license (he needed something to do while I was busy fangirling), before slowly making our way over the the Royal Shakespeare Company's Courtyard Theater.
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We waited there for about half an hour before t_eyla arrived! It was so nice to meet her in person, she's a lot of fun. After snapping the below picture for us, Billy went off to go fishing and t_eyla and I prepared for an incredible afternoon and evening.
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Love's Labour's Lost started at 1pm. Our seats were in the third level, but it was still low enough to make out the expressions on everyone's faces and hear perfectly well. I was very pleased. Here's a shot of the stage before the production began. It was much prettier in person.
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David Tennant was amazing as Berowne, making the whole audience laugh with glee at almost every line. There was a moment in the beginning of the play when he tossed a straw hat from his head onto a short, protruding tree branch. The hat landed on the branch and stayed there without a hitch. The audience erupted into enthusiastic applause. Then, David broke character for a moment, flashing us a cheeky grin and saying "every time." The audience, you can imagine, just clapped harder. Before and after that moment though, he was Berowne, bringing the character to life so much that I hung on every word. The entire experience was a brilliant as it was surreal.

We missed seeing him at the Stage Door by about two seconds because we had trouble finding it, but resolved most emphatically to arrive on time after our next play. With that goal firmly stated, we grabbed a quick dinner of fish and chips, before going back to the theater to explore a little. We had a bit of fun with the large posters hanging up in the lobbies.
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Both of us agreed that this alternative version of the publicity poster is so much more emotive than the original. I wish they'd had it available for purchase.
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About 45 minutes before Hamlet was to begin, Martha was purchasing a program (I'd already bought mine the previous day and left it in my hotel room) and I was just going to wait for her in the main lobby. As as I was walking past a door marked "staff only" PATRICK STEWART CAME THROUGH THE DOOR!!!

No lie, he was about a foot and half away from me. I played it rather cool actually and kept walking until his back was turned. Then I ran in the other direction and tugged on t_eyla's coat sleeve, saying in a frantically loud whisper, "OMG, OMG, I just saw Patrick Stewart and he's RIGHT THERE!" She turned just in time to see him disappear into another staff door.
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As for the play itself, there is hardly a way to describe watching an RSC production of Hamlet starring David Tennant and Patrick Stewart. To be honest, Most of the first act confused me a little bit. It is a bit intense and the language is complex, however once I got into the swing of things, I enjoyed it very much. As usual, David was amazing. You can read any of his reviews to know this in more detail. I won't restate what someone has already stated better.

Just before the curtain call ended, Martha and I escaped our row and RAN down the steps, through the lobby, outside onto the sidewalk, and around the corner to the stage door. We weren't the first one's there, by any means, but we were VERY, VERY close to it.

NONE OF THESE PICTURES ARE ZOOMED IN ON. HE WAS ACTUALLY THAT CLOSE TO ME!!!
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And of course, I got his audograph.
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He was only outside for a few minutes, but he was just as sweet and charming as everyone always says he is, thanking us for coming to the show when we told him how much we enjoyed it and just being positively lovely.

After this neither of us was calm enough to just go home, so we went out for a celebratory drink. I had a blast sitting with some rather drunk English women and men who wanted me to say certain things with my American Accent. It's exactly what I would have wanted to do to them had our situations been reversed. This has been one of the best days ever!!

Cheers!
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previous day ~ next day
 
 
Current Location: stratford-upon-avon
Current Mood: giddygiddy
 
 
 
Nicolebandgeek01 on October 19th, 2008 02:37 am (UTC)
Wonderful review :D and Fantastic pictures!


Nicole
woodsie22: sadHamletwoodsie22 on October 19th, 2008 02:43 am (UTC)
I love hearing stories like this - it brings back so many great memories from this summer.
Casey: DW-DoctorDonnatheblackpython on October 19th, 2008 02:43 am (UTC)
I love that your room's name was Oberon! Did all the rooms have names from Shakespeare plays?
svanderslice: DT - Hamlet with skullsvanderslice on October 23rd, 2008 09:20 pm (UTC)
Yes they did! There was a Viola, as well as a few other names, but I can't remember them all right now. It was a really cute idea.
xfilesannie: adorkablexfilesannie on October 19th, 2008 02:51 am (UTC)
Looks like you had an amazing time, I wish I could have gone, but it's been awesome reading everyone's recaps.

This made me laugh:

[Error: Irreparable invalid markup ('<i [...] accent.>') in entry. Owner must fix manually. Raw contents below.]

Looks like you had an amazing time, I wish I could have gone, but it's been awesome reading everyone's recaps.

This made me laugh:

<I had a blast sitting with some rather drunk English women and men who wanted me to say certain things with my American Accent.>

That reminds me of this time when I was at a Soap Opera fan event and there was a girl from England who kept telling me that I had such a lovely American accent. I was like "I kept thinking I don't have an accent, you do", LOL. :)
xfilesannie: adorkablexfilesannie on October 19th, 2008 02:52 am (UTC)
Clearly I have no understanding of how to use symbols on livejournal, this what I was trying to say...

Looks like you had an amazing time, I wish I could have gone, but it's been awesome reading everyone's recaps.

This made me laugh:

(I had a blast sitting with some rather drunk English women and men who wanted me to say certain things with my American Accent.)

That reminds me of this time when I was at a Soap Opera fan event and there was a girl from England who kept telling me that I had such a lovely American accent. I was like "I kept thinking I don't have an accent, you do", LOL. :)
_outof_focus: hamlet!david_outof_focus on October 19th, 2008 05:15 am (UTC)
Here from tennant_love

Sounds like you had a wonderful time, and great pictures! =]

And yay for fellow Americans! I was over in England (for a two week vacation) for Hamlet (and general touristyness) at the beginning of August and it was so much fun. I wish I could go back (and I wish I could have gone when LLL was playing, but college comes before Tennant XD)
jaradeljaradel on October 19th, 2008 05:52 am (UTC)
I'm going to London in January to see Hamlet, and when I tell people that, I get the strangest looks. I don't even mention David Tennant - somehow, the idea that someone would leave this country to go to another country to see a play just strikes people as odd. You're right - from a previous post - Americans need to get out more.

Oh, and I was at the Coach factory outlet one day, and got a passport cover there for (relatively) cheap. But yours sounds way cooler!

Glad you had a great time, and how much fun was it for a bunch of English people to want you to say things with your American accent! I'm from NoVA, and as another person on here commented, I really don't think I have an accent either, so for someone to ask me to say something with my "accent" would be strange :)
maddie_janemaddie_jane on October 19th, 2008 08:23 am (UTC)
Brilliant write up hun. Sounds like you had the most fantastic time :)
Judiang: Casanova- Come with mejudiang on October 19th, 2008 09:04 am (UTC)
Hey!
hi! We are staying down the street at the adelphi guest house. We were a LLL saturday & were at stage door last night. Will be here until the 25th. Ring up Judi, Steph, & Elsa if you like.
Sallychansallangel on October 19th, 2008 11:30 am (UTC)
Yay! You were the lady infront of me in the toilet queue at the interval of LLL! Wooh! I totally agree with the whole: "They should have used the other Hamlet photo" thing. He looks LUVLY. :D
eva clear #190absinthea on October 19th, 2008 11:52 am (UTC)
Wow...you found each other in the "worlds most efficient toilet queue!"

Edited at 2008-10-19 11:55 am (UTC)
eva clear #190: Hamletabsinthea on October 19th, 2008 11:54 am (UTC)
I was there last week for Hamlet (14th) and LLL (16th). I, too, could not find the freakin' stage door after Hamlet. Patrick Stewart drove by the front of the theatre about 15 minutes after the play was over in his Jaguar. My friend Trish spotted him, pointed and laughed (kind of the "ZOMG! You are totally cool driving by in your Jag!!! LOLZ!") and Patrick nodded and laughed in return. After LLL, though, I got to the stage door about 2 minuted before David came out and he came RIGHT OVER to where I was standing. He was a darling!! But he was out there for all of about a minute and a half.
I loved Ricky Champ (Costard) and got an autograph and a photo with him. He made me nearly pee my pants because he was so hilarious.

OH and didn't you just about melt at the fact that David had the perfectly toussled trademark hair going on. Talk about immediate fangirl squee which was so high pitched that only dogs (and perhaps other fangirls) could hear it. ;)
Miz Laurelhoppytoad79 on October 19th, 2008 12:13 pm (UTC)
That close to David Tennant. AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! *passes out from overload* Lucky ladies!
svanderslice: DW - 10 soft smilesvanderslice on October 23rd, 2008 09:19 pm (UTC)
I know, it was absolutely incredible. :)
footie - gal: oh la lamelissah1 on October 19th, 2008 02:00 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the review, sounds absolutely wonderful :)
svanderslice: DW - 10 Timelordsvanderslice on October 23rd, 2008 09:18 pm (UTC)
Oh it was, it really was! Thanks for commenting. :)
dudewithakdudewithak on October 20th, 2008 04:11 pm (UTC)
Very Cool! Very big squee factor! I think you really needed that drink afterward!
svanderslice: DW - 10 Timelordsvanderslice on October 23rd, 2008 09:18 pm (UTC)
Yeah we did. We were so high from the experience we were ready to dance all around town. :)
ever_wasever_was on October 29th, 2008 10:04 pm (UTC)
Oh, I was squeeing just from your second-hand squee. *huge grin*