Maybe we were all weary at the end of a full day of theatre; maybe, and with ample justification, the cast were flagging after appearances in different roles in the previous two parts of the trilogy, but whatever the explanation Richard III seemed something of an anti-climax rather than a natural culmination of this notable revival of the Barton/Hall Wars of the Roses.
In the case of Betty Buckley as Carlotta, the casting was inspired. Her powerful and joyful rendition of I’m Still Here stopped the show. But it was Anita Dobson’s self-deprecating turn as Stella which finally galvanised the entire company into glorious cohesion: her attack in Who’s That Woman was splendid (a gutsy belt matched her tap-dancing prowess) and she and all of the other women acquitted themselves well in bringing Andrew Wright’s clever choreography to life. The younger versions of Sally, Phyllis, Ben and Buddy were spot-on, engaging and sublime. Christine Baranski’s Phyllis was brittle, regal and immaculately stylish.