Judi Dench Hates The Merchant of Venice


I don’t mean the current smash production with Al Pacino and Lily Rabe.

I mean the play itself–you know, the one by old whatshisname.

In her new memoir, And Furthermore, Judes remembers agreeing to play Portia in a 1970 Royal Shakespeare Company production of Merchant despite her utter distaste for it.

“I loathe the play,” she writes.

“I think it is terrible, everyone behaves frightfully badly.

Who cares about anybody in it?”

Dame Dench so detested the script that one night, instead of saying “to stay you from election,” she slipped and said “to stay you from erection.”

That night it was fun.

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