Uncle Vanya, night one

Lots to post but can’t type well on my phone, so longer update will follow when I get home again in a few days and am back at my laptop. This past evening I met up with Hariclea to see Uncle Vanya in London’s West End together and it was good! Toby Jones is such a great Vanya and I couldn’t take my eyes off Richard Armitage as Dr Astrov.

Quick pic I took at the end of the play:

We had great seats, 4th row with excellent close up views of Richard. After the play we went straight out to the stage door, Ciaran Hinds was the first one out. He came across as gentle and softspoken. I complimented him on his performance and we had a lovely, short, smiley exchange. Alas the pic where we exchanged smiles is a blur but it was a lovely moment.

Richard came out next. He was quick as lightening, kept his head down, didn’t say much but graciously signed what he was given. I also complimented him and as he moved on he threw me a quick half glance with a smile and thank you. In the 4th pic below he’s signing my poster.

And Toby Jones was the absolute sweetest. He took a little more time, smiled and thanked for compliments and very patiently and graciously posed for photos. I cut off the lovely Cindy who stood there with us but she was in these too.

Pics were not from my best angle but nonetheless I am very grateful for them. Thank you so much Hariclea for taking them! 😘

I’m pleased with the end result of my signed poster. Should’ve used a light marker but it’s still good with all the black signatures too.

Off to bed now. More to follow at a later time.

Edit: Apparently when you publish from your phone, comments are automatically switched off. They’re switched on now…

Uncle Vanya has opened!

I’m late to the party (been busy here) but this past Thursday Uncle Vanya, the new play Richard Armitage is in, has opened at the Harold Pinter Theatre in London. There was a press night and all. Leading up to the evening, Richard had posted this picture on his Instagram account:

2020 RA running in NYC

He was running to the press night, he said in the caption. I very much like this image! The handsomeness, the action, the jumping hair, the black and white, and even the plaid suit. He seems to quite like plaid now (see pics down below!).

Guylty has got RA net up and running after it’s recent move to another hosting platform (it’s looking great on first glimpse, Guylty, THANK YOU!) and has collected the reviews for the play there under the 24th January 2020 entry: http://richardarmitagenet.com/news/. Most reviews give the play 4 or 5 stars, and I saw one or two 3 star reviews. All around, this is sounding excellent!

2020-0123 Uncle Vanya opening night stage 01

After recently declaring he’s way past taking his shirt off in productions, Richard does take his shirt off in Uncle Vanya again after all! It does seem to be one of the highlight scenes of the play – not due to the shirtlessness, I understand, but due to the drunken mood in the scene that apparently contains a lot of humour (and yes, below I also cropped the image of Richard with his shirt off, couldn’t resist).

2020-0123 Uncle Vanya on stage2020-0123 Uncle Vanya on stage - RA no shirt cutout

Nope, I don’t quite see that dad bod you mentioned having, Mr Armitage! Joking aside, the play does seem to have a magic mix of drama and humour, which really makes me look forward to it even more.

There was an afterparty celebrating the play’s opening night with some nice images of the cast and Richard in another plaid suit.

2020-0123 Uncle Vanya opening night 012020-0123 Uncle Vanya opening night 03

I wasn’t too fond of it to begin with (I quite like the plaid but wasn’t sure about the green), but I admit that the suit has grown on me somewhat.

More pictures with cast members (click on images to enlarge)…

… with everyone looking very happy, as they should after such a successful night! In a month I will be able to see this for myself and I am already really looking forward to it. Not just because of Richard and the play sounding very good, but I’m really excited to see Ciarán Hinds and Toby Jones as well! I loved Ciarán in Persuasion and Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day and some other things I have seen him in and Toby is forever planted in my heart because of his work in The Painted Veil. Just four more weeks to wait before I head off to London…

Mrs Maisel, The Stranger & Uncle Vanya

It’s been pretty busy here with little time for blogging this past week. Besides work and family I’ve been binge-watching The Marvelous Mrs Maisel which I liked not quite as much as I had anticipated but I still did really enjoy it. I love that it’s all set in Jewish families at the end of the 1950s/beginning 60s and I really enjoy the every day humor (more than the stand up routines). My fave characters are Susie Myerson (played so brilliantly by Alex Borstein, in the left picture on the left) and Abe Weissman (played by Tony Shalhoub) who is Midge Maisel’s (Rachel Brosnahan’s) dad.

But Mrs Maisel is really just a side note here. I didn’t start this post to talk about that show, I came to gush about the one and only Richard Armitage and his new projects!

Yesterday a more extended trailer for his Netflix series The Stranger dropped:

I’ve gotta say, it really does look good! After the Berlin Station hype (a show I never really enjoyed despite the hype) I have been cautious to get excited about this project. However, after seeing the trailer I have got to say, my expectations have really risen! The Netflix page is already there, looks like this for me:

Netflix The Stranger RA

Guess I know what I’ll be doing with my evenings in two weeks time. It’ll be the first thing I watch on Netflix after watching and re-watching Anne with an E (which still needs to get renewed! Come on, get with the program, Netflix!).

Not only The Stranger is looking good! Richard’s play Uncle Vanya has opened in London this week and the first whisperings are also sounding very good. It’s looking beautiful too.

2020-0117 Uncle Vanya 012020-0117 Uncle Vanya 03

And some really nice and beautifully dramatic stage stills were released today; I just love the look of that decor and the costumes. Here are the images Richard is in (click on images to enlarge)…

I am also very curious to see Toby Jones and Ciaran Hinds. I don’t know Rosalind Eleazar but she does look lovely here.

Servetus has already been to 3 performances of Uncle Vanya, she wrote about them here, here and here. Guylty has written about stage door experiences here and here. There has been some sharing on Twitter, among others by the lovely Linda Sechzig (one of my partners in crime when we saw Richard in Newcastle two years ago)…

And now more than ever I am looking forward to next month, when I get to see all this for myself in London! I will only be going to one show (yeah, just can’t do more, I have a family budget to consider) but one is far better than none, right? This Richard Armitage year is starting out really well. 🙂

More, more, more! How d’you like it?

More Richard goodies today and this old disco song springs to mind…

There really is a song for everything, isn’t there?

Anyway, the morning in Richard-news started out nicely with fellow fan Young Veloce translating a Korean article where the South-Korean director Jo Sung-hee speaks about Richard who filmed with him last year.

Yes, this very much sounds like the Richard we have come to know. And best thing yet? Young-Veloce got a shout out from The Armitage himself for this! I bet she’s really excited about that. 😊

Next up, Servetus referenced an interview with Ciaran Hinds about Uncle Vanya here. I took screenshots of the section where he speaks about the play. It does pique my curiosity and I’m really excited that Hinds and Toby Jones are in this play as well.

CH interview 01CH interview 02CH interview 03CH interview 04

Servetus also dug up an interview with Conor McPherson, the paywright who has adapted Uncle Vanya. Again, I made screenshots of where Vanya is referenced:

The Stage UV 01The Stage UV 02

I suppose the adaptation won’t stray too much from the original but I have never seen the original (and can barely remember reading it), so I have nothing to compare it to.

And last, but not least, Amazing Grace on Twitter unearted another interview, this time in a publication called “Psychologies Magazine”.

Richard lives on a monthly cycle? Is that why so many women feel an affinitity with him? 😉 Sorry to relate this to Anne with an E again, but it makes me think of when Anne gets her first period and her freaking out over her cycle (the funniest bit and the part I thought of starts at 1 minute 30 seconds into this video)…

Guess cycles are not just a female thing anymore. Or maybe he’s secretly a werewolf? Hmm, now that is an intriguing thought… Ties back nicely to his Wolverine audioplays (which I still haven’t listened to).

RA Wolverine

I also get that Richard is all about peace and love and ‘let’s just get along’. So am I, I totally am a peacemaker type and a see-all-sides-to-everything kind of person, but goodness, does he come off a bit wishy-washy and preachy here, or is it just me? Maybe that has something to do with the type of magazine (it’s a mindfulness magazine, after all) and the kind of interview this was?  Oh well, at least we learned about the cycle thing and what he thinks about damaging truths. Knowing that makes me curious about what he’d think of the movie The Farewell, which I thought was really good when I saw it a while back. It’s all about not telling someone a damaging truth…

Is Richard Armitage secretly Chinese? I wonder…

Good Lord!

I am not a religious person but “Good Lord!” escaped my lips when I just now saw this image cross my Twitter timeline!

RA jan 2020 UV rehearsal

I… have…no… words…. Has Richard’s hair always been this curly? Blue is a good colour on him, I love love love his hair longer like that, I love the beard with specks of grey in it and then there’s that intensity… Yes, good lord indeed! The images are from this “What’s on Stage” tweet…

I’m close to 14 years into my Richard Armitage crush, but this takes my breath away. Even fuzzy in the background he looks stunning! And I’ve gotta say, Ciaran Hinds is also doing something to my insides here…

CH & RA jan 2020 - UV rehearsal

As I click through the pictures in the link in that tweet, there’s also this one!

RA jan 2020 UV rehearsal2

Is it the end of February already? For these looks alone I’m looking forward to Uncle Vanya, not to mention the ride we’ll be in for with the play itself….