Tartuffe – May 2009 Bath Chronicle Review

The Rondo Theatre Company has put on a highly enjoyable adaptation of arguably Moliere’s most renowned work. Under the sure hand of director Mike Taylor, the audience at the Rondo was treated to a gem of a production. It is 17th century France and a wealthy family watch in horror as the sycophantic conman Tartuffe, hoodwinks his way into the master’s good favour. After the master’s wife cons the conman into revealing his treacherous misdeeds, the family may be too late to save themselves as the devious Tartuffe attempts to usurp the master and take over the household. A huge amount of credit must go to Pulitzer Prize winning poet and translator, Richard Wilbur, who would have delighted Moliere himself with this quite brilliant translation; the entire play, true to the original version, is performed in rhyming couplets. Superb performances all around, but special mention to Chris Seton-Smith, whose portrayal of the smarmy and morally corrupt Tartuffe, is both hilarious and unctuous in equal measure. Regardless of whether they were Moliere fans, the audience thoroughly enjoyed this polished and often very funny production.

Jake Tupman

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