On the weekend of the 477th anniversary of her execution, I am privy to the events leading to Anne Boleyn’s rise to the title of Queen and subsequent untimely death. Fallen in Love explores the rollercoaster of emotion and power play the two young Boleyns endured while King Henry ruled 16th Century England . Most importantly however, is writer and director Joanna Carrick’s recreation of the fascinating relationship between Anne and her brother, George. Filled with secrets, laughs and tears the audience experiences as much of a ride as the two protagonists.
A setting of significance, the heart of the Tower of London plays host to Red Rose Chain’s exciting and historical production. In the round, a single four-poster bed sits centre stage with George lying atop singing to himself. The performance starts.
Emma Connell as Anne was absolutely astonishing. Arguably the more complex of the two roles, Connell strips Anne completely bare, immediately wiping the audiences’ mind of any preconceived conceptions we may have. She is a joy to watch, capturing both Anne’s initial innocence with the air of ease, and then her complete transformation into the power driven, damaged woman historians have argued over for years.
Equally, Scott Ellis’ portrayal of Anne’s most intimate ally George is beautiful. Firstly presented as a very playful young man, Ellis escorts us faultlessly through the throes of politics and love as George comes to realise their doom.
As ever, Carrick’s direction is superb. Coupled with her script, the play jumps through time effortlessly and you’re never at a loss as to what is happening. Those transitions were helped hugely by the incredibly accurate costume design and changes throughout the performance. It’s truly a feast for the eyes!
I honestly can’t find fault with this compelling piece of theatre, I would recommend to all. Enchanting.