THE SHOW "National Theatre: 50 Years on Stage" on "Great Performances"
WHEN | WHERE Friday night at 9 on PBS/13
Highlights from the archives include a delicious young Maggie Smith in "Hay Fever," Judi Dench singing "Send in the Clowns" and the opening moments of the National's first production, "Hamlet," with Derek Jacobi as the Ghost. Joan Plowright re-creates her Saint Joan on the stage of the old theater. Performing live at the National's home, Helen Mirren does a harrowing scene from "Mourning Becomes Electra." Benedict Cumberbatch wittily expounds on "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead," Ralph Fiennes triumphs as a certain Australian press lord in "Pravda," while Michael Gambon and Jacobi do the same scene from "No Man's Land" that we just watched in a 1976 clip with John Gielgud and Ralph Richardson.
MY SAY I wish the actors in the live performances were identified. Otherwise, I wish it would have gone on forever.