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Edinburgh Royal Lyceum

Thon Man Molière.

20 May 2016 to 11 June 2016

Archived on BBC iPlayer is (the rather dashing) Dr Michael Scott’s revelatory series exploring the impact of Classical Greek theatre on Western civilisation’s later embrace of stage drama, as we recognise it, from the Renaissance to today. In the third century BC Athens was in decline as a power, and its drama turned inwards, away from politics and tragedy (they had enough of their own to contend with) to more prosaic morality plays and the forerunner of sitcoms, comedy of manners and errors.

It is both Shakespeare and Molière who are repeatedly cited.

With having more than enough Shakespeare to shake a stick at this season so far, let us check out ‘Thon Man Molière’ It seems that Liz Lochhead is up to some more mischief scurrilously encouraged by Director, Tony Cownie. It is a very warm welcome to the returning Siobhan Redmond, as  Madeleine Bejart.

Ms Redmond once in role as Edinburgh bawdy-house owner, Jean Brash in BBC Radio’s  McClevey, with Brian Cox, should be no stranger to the city or to men’s naughty (fictitious!) derelictions. With Jimmy Chisholm as Molière, let battle commence.

Recognised as one of France’s master satirical playwrights, The Misanthrope, The School For Wives, Tartuffe, and more. Darling of the Court of Philippe I, brother Louis XIV, his social life was sometimes as desperate as his clashes with the Church.

Outstanding enough to feature on Horrible Histories’ ‘Stupid Deaths’, poor Molière died of a TB induced coughing fit soon after he collapsed on stage. What panache, what fitting satirical élan, he was performing the hypochondriac Argan.

Writer of the acclaimed Perfect Days and Mary Queen of Scots got her Head Chopped Off, as well as celebrated Scots versions of Medea, Oedipus, Antigone and Molière’s great trio of masterpieces, poet and playwright Liz Lochhead returns to The Lyceum with a brand new original play.

It tells the story of her hero, the great comedian Molière; his scandalous marriage, his scurrilous plays and the irresistible creation of his infamous and celebrated satire Tartuffe.

“Why do folk not, ever, catch on to themselves?…Ach, gies you another interesting nutter to play…”

Tickets and more details here.