Peter Dinklage performed Your Name alongside The National guitarists Aaron and Bryce Dessner on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert last night.
The trio, accompanied by a string quartet and pianist, have all contributed to the forthcoming movie musical, Cyrano (due December 31). Dinklage plays the title role, while the Dessners penned the music.
The performance is bold and affecting – some distance from the star-studded, yet hollow Hollywood offerings of recent years (yes, we’re talking about Cats).
The Dessners, here wielding twin Gibson Firebirds, of course have talents extending beyond their roles on the fretboard, or indeed The National. Bryce Dessner is a successful composer, while Aaron Dessner is renowned for lending his production talents to everyone from Ben Howard to Taylor Swift. The duo have also worked together on multiple film scores.
Both Dinklage and the Dessners became involved with Cyrano when it was developed as an off Broadway production back in 2018 based on Erica Schmidt’s own adaptation of the Cyrano de Bergerac story.
The movie version will be directed by Joe Wright (best known for his period dramas, like Pride & Prejudice, Atonement and Darkest Hour). Like the stage production, the film re-works the classic story of Cyrano de Bergerac, the talented poet and swordsman who is dogged by his physical appearance. It is a role that Dinklage inhabits with a unique empathy.
“Normally, Cyrano is played by a very handsome actor with a big rubber nose on his face,” Wright has said.
“And although we may suspend our disbelief, we know that actor can, at the end of the day, take off his nose and go to the pub and be a handsome actor. Whereas with Pete, you know he is as he is. And he brings with his smaller stature a giant soul.”
Dinklage is already being tipped for Oscar recognition, with the early Deadline review noting the actor “makes it so fresh, so alive, and so potent it feels like we are seeing Cyrano depicted for the very first time.”
Cyrano is released on December 31, 2021.