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BWW Review: Everett in THE JUDAS KISS is Absolute Perfection


5 out of 5 stars

It is truly a rare sight to see a theatre as large as The Ed Mirvish at capacity for a serious two and a half hour drama. Plays as intimate as this one are generally more suited to smaller venues. However the current production of The Judas Kiss, in Toronto from the UK before it takes New York by storm, is marvelous and must be seen by all before it leaves; it feels perfectly at home in the Eddy.

The play examines the life of Oscar Wilde in two key points - immediately following his trial for gross indecency with his young mate, Bosie (Charlie Rowe) - and later in Naples following Wilde's prison sentence.

Rupert Everett is giving the performance of a lifetime as Wilde. The actor is nearly unrecognizable on stage - everything from his stance to the flick of his wrist and twitch of his nose is the perfect embodiment of Wilde's whit and nonchalance.

Rowe is perfectly cast as the manipulative object of Wide's affection. He makes for an excellent contrast to Everett's dry disposition.

Cal MacAninch plays Wilde's former lover and sensible freind Robbie Ross. The cast is rounded out by the delightful Elliot Balchin, Jessie Hills and Alister Cameron as the hotel servants. Tom Colley appears briefly in the second act as Bosie's one night stand.

The entire cast is delightful but the show belongs to Everett.

The production is brilliantly directed by Neil Armfield and exquisitely designed by Dale Ferguson. The text itself is remarkable. Written by David Hare - the play is perfectly paced, highly engaging, and never drags.

If you love theatre, this is a play you mustn't miss.

The Judas Kiss is on stage through May 1st. Tickets are available at or by phone at 1.800.461.3333.

Audience Advisory: Mature themes; sexual content; nudity. Herbal cigarettes are smoked on stage.

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From This Author Alan Henry