The Sydney Theatre Company’s recent journey to New York performing Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya, with Cate Blanchett in the role of Yelena, has been widely publicised on The Drama Teacher in the past few weeks, partly due to the large readership of this website in Australia. Blanchett has been universally praised for her acting in this production, but it seems the accolades just keep on coming.
A few days ago, Ben Brantley from The New York Times discussed Blanchett’s courage as a dare-devil who took many risks in her portrayal of Yelena; down to earth and within herself. Over the years, it seems, Brantley has witnessed far too many actresses playing Yelena that are caught simply showing off, and so Blanchett’s performance must have arrived as a welcome relief.
Brantley’s full article on Blanchett is an interesting read, but just as fascinating is the reader comments, with many theatre-goers listing their favourite performances over the decades that “took their breath away with bravery”.