Titchfield Festival Theatre’s final play in this year’s Shakespeare festival is The Merry Wives of Windsor.
With an authentic, nearly all-male cast, the comedy comes to the Great Barn on Mill Lane, Titchfield from Wednesday until October 3.
The play is based around Sir John Falstaff, who featured in Shakespeare’s history plays, Henry IV parts one and two. Legend has it that Queen Elizabeth I so wanted Falstaff to be in love that she asked Shakespeare to write a play on that theme, and he obliged with The Merry Wives of Windsor.
Unemployed, with no wars to follow, Falstaff tries to fill his shrinking purse by wooing the respectable Windsor wives of Ford and Page, sending them identical love letters. The titular wives are not amused when they discover his ploy and seek revenge upon him in hilarious ways.
As midnight chimes, Hearn, the great haunted oak, casts its shadowy spell and Falstaff warily prepares for fairies, hobgoblins and a few surprises.
Shows commence at 7.30pm. Tickets: £9-£11, call 01329 556156 to book.