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Miriam Margolyes in

Dickens' Women

December 18

December 22, 2012

Upstairs at Chicago Shakespeare

devised by Miriam Margolyes and Sonia Fraser
directed by Sonia Fraser

Critical Acclaim


“Step back, Scrooge. There's another Dickens hit in town — but only for a few days. Step lively if you want to snag a ducat before it departs.

Dickens' Women, first performed by star and co-creator Miriam Margolyes in 1989, closes out a monthslong international tour in honor of Charles Dickens' 200th birthday Saturday at Chicago Shakespeare's intimate Upstairs Theater. And though it will surely resonate most strongly with Dickens disciples, Margolyes delivers a cunning, crowd-pleasing and occasionally heartbreaking tour through the distaff gallery of idealized ingenues, wily widows and grotesque gargoyles that fill Dickens' groaning board of Victorian life.”


“Margolyes easily connects with audience members when speaking directly to them, then seamlessly slips into character – and so many characters! At times, the play is intensely dramatic; at other times, it is humorous, and, if you look closely, you’ll see a fleeting twinkle in Margolyes’ eyes that lets you know she’s in on the joke with the audience. Margolyes’ considerable skill is on full display in this play that allows her to show her expansive range of acting ability.”


“Instead of me reading Dickens, I would contract Miriam Margolyes to read to me. The vocally talented Margolyes is transfixing. She goes from character to character with animated facial expressions and distinct diction. Margolyes is the charming dinner guest that you never want to leave.”


“The rewards are rich and plenty… she adroitly informs as she entertains ”


“Played with comic timing and emotional truth… a magnificent actor ”


“Studded with brilliantly rendered cameos ”


“ Strikes gold….simply, this is a great evening ”


“Miriam Margolyes throws herself into her roles with a kind of ferocious delight, both interpreting and interpolating her views about Dickens ”


“Not only do the separate characters come to life: so do the scenes in which they appear…..the major credit must go to Miss Margolyes’ acting ”


“Her passion is as much a subject of the evening as the author himself. Anyone who loves to read will recognise her devotion, her attention, and will be enchanted by her gift at transforming the pleasures of the text into the pleasures of the stage. ”

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