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|Bottoms Up for Dawn French|
- Comedienne takes on Shakespeare comedy
DAWN FRENCH is to play Bottom in a feminist version of A Midsummer Night's Dream. Shakespeare's popular comedy follows hot on the heels of Caryl Churchill's Far Away at the Albery Theatre from March 22 and also stars Jemma Redgrave.
Matthew Francis's radical production is set in a 1940s English manor where an enemy bomb sends the occupants roaming through an enchanted forest. True to the Bard's careful plotting, a magic potion plunges four young lovers into the depths of unrequited passion and accounts for Queen Titania's suddenly lustful feelings for an ass called Bottom.
French's big-eared role marks a return to the stage following the West End hit Me and Mamie O'Rourke. Better known for her TV work like The Vicar of Dibley, French won fame in the 1980s for her stand-up routine with comic partner Jennifer Saunders. Her size-ist jokes and comic flair should prepare her for Shakespeare's witty creation.