Thursday, June 21, 2012

Julius Caesar at the RSC!

The Royal Shakespeare Company's new production of Julius Caesar, directed by Gregory Doran, opens against the desert landscape of modern Africa. I am pleased that the RSC took the chance to showcase the amazing African-British talent available in this country, even employing amateurs for the crowd scenes.

Like Africa, Shakespeare's Rome is no stranger to outrageous dictators and power struggles. Doran's imagined setting brings modern context to ethical debate of political murder in today's world. The play, which can often be slow going in parts, had new-found urgency in this production - keeping the action moving throughout the performance.

Paterson Joseph's Brutus was fresh and idealistic - the perfect combination for a serious political blunderer. Cyril Nri's Antony was a bit one-note, passionate and loud, but with no real depth of character. Adjoa Andoh and Ann Ogbomo, as Portia and Calpurnia gave stunningly beautiful performances and are certainly two of the best female actresses at the RSC this season.

Overall, a great night at the theatre!

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