Photo credit: http://www.urban-vacation.com/167/ralph-fiennes-in-shakespeares-the-tempest-showing-at-the-haymarket-theatre-royal-london/
Tonight is the closing night for The Tempest, starring Ralph Fiennes, at the Theatre Royal Haymarket. I will miss it very very very much. I really loved this production - I have seen many many many Tempests over the years and this was my second favourite version of all time. My feature on this Tempest is here:
Photo credit: http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/2011/sep/08/ralph-fiennes-tempest
I am going to close with the epilogue from The Tempest which is spoken by Prospero (Ralph Fiennes in this production). The Tempest is widely recognised as Shakespeare's last play and so these closing words are heavily autobiographical.
SPOKEN BY PROSPERO
Now my charms are all o'erthrown,
And what strength I have's mine own,
Which is most faint: now, 'tis true,
I must be here confined by you,
Or sent to Naples. Let me not,
Since I have my dukedom got
And pardon'd the deceiver, dwell
In this bare island by your spell;
But release me from my bands
With the help of your good hands:
Gentle breath of yours my sails
Must fill, or else my project fails,
Which was to please. Now I want
Spirits to enforce, art to enchant,
And my ending is despair,
Unless I be relieved by prayer,
Which pierces so that it assaults
Mercy itself and frees all faults.
As you from crimes would pardon'd be,
Let your indulgence set me free.
I cannot add to that!