A much needed ray of sunshine has penetrated the storm clouds around the Royal Shakespeare Company with the news that Parliament's Culture Media and Sport Committee has backed Adrian Noble's plans for tearing down the existing theatre at Stratford.
Reservations about the plan — which has been queried by Prince Charles, among others — were apparently removed after an official visit to Stratford's Shakespeare Theatre, which chairman Gerald Kaufman described as "squalid" and "inadequate."
The Committee's main question seems to be whether the RSC has budgeted enough money for its plans. The current target figure is £100 million, but the Committee seems to feel that more may be needed.
Whatever the exact amount required to carry out Noble's ambitious plans for the future, at least they have now received official backing in principle, a long-awaited step in the right direction.
—By Paul Webb Theatrenow