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Tartuffe, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Glasgow

Taking to the Royal Conservatoire's main stage, the New Athenaeum Theatre, these third-year BA actors were given a treat to get their creative teeth stuck into: Liz Lochhead's adaptation of Moliere's Tartuffe.

Superbly directed by Tony Cownie, it is the perfect showcase for their talents.

At first a little ear-tuning was required to fully appreciate the broad Scots and rhyming couplets, especially from a winning Diana Duarte as housemaid Dorine, who was going at an impressive speed from the outset. The domestic rural scene was beautifully set, with suitably complementary costume design, also by Sophie Martin.

Tartuffe (the soul!) is practically the only name the audience hears until the man himself makes his entrance after about 45 minutes of character examination. He has his promoters, mainly master of the house Orgon (played by a versatile Alfie Wellcoat), and his aged mother Madame Pernelle, as well as his detractors who sniff him out as an imposter early on. Feisty wee Dorine has him sussed. Taking sides with the hypocritical man of God, rather than believing his own wife and child, leads to the seeming demise of Orgon, although good counsel from Cleante (Umar Pasha) adds balance throughout the well-paced action.

Scarlett Mack and Jessica Hardwick impress as wife and mother respectively, but it is Chris Donald as the eponymous rogue who really allows us under the skin of his character. If your flesh doesn't creep watching him, you cannot be human. His lights and darks, and hammed-up grotesque physical humour, were spot on, and served by, as well as in service to, the slick direction of the piece.

HHHHH

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