Sir Ian McKellen is the kind of actor who can captivate viewers even when asked to act for hours in front of green screens and perform alongside computer generated goblins.
So, imagine what this benighted thespian can accomplish when given some proper scenery to chew on and some real lines to deliver — in a National Theatre production of “King Lear” for example.
Newport audiences will get to see just that this Friday, Nov. 9, as the National Theatre: Live in HD series presents Director Jonathan Munby’s contemporary retelling of Shakespeare’s tender, violent and shocking play.
Considered by many to be the greatest tragedy ever written, “King Lear” sees two aging fathers — one a King, the other his courtier — reject the children who truly love them. Their blindness unleashes a tornado of pitiless ambition and treachery, as family and state are plunged into a violent power struggle with bitter ends.
Broadcast live from London’s West End, this Chichester Festival Theatre production received five-star reviews for its sell-out run before transferring to the West End for a limited season.
The Newport screening, hosted by Kay Moxness, will start at 7 pm at the Newport Performing Arts Center, 777 W Olive Street.
Tickets, $16 for adults, $13 for seniors and $11 for students, are available at newportpac.com, at the box office or by calling 541-265-ARTS (2787).
Ian McKellen in “King Lear”