Octogenarian versions of Shakespeare's lovers to feature in Bristol production
Directed By Tom Morris
Fresh from co-directing the West End hit, War Horse, and Tom Stoppard and Andre Previn's orchestral experiment Every Good Boy Deserves Favour at the National Theatre, Tom Morris' own theatrical exploration of Bristol Old Vic begins with a project that has been twelve years in the making: Juliet and Her Romeo, the story of a flourishing love affair in one generation, crushed by the financial and political concerns of another.
Developed since 1997 in collaboration with Minder producer Sean O'Connor, the production uses Shakespeare's text, but casts our lovers in their 80s, with their anxious children, not their parents, seeking to prevent an imprudent and costly match.
With Sian Phillips as Juliet and Michael Byrne as Romeo, this production invites a generation of actors of global stature to play great Shakespearean roles which they never thought they'd play again. Tim Barlow, Terry Taplin and Michael Medwin return to Bristol Old Vic as Tybalt, Benvolio and Paris. Dudley Sutton makes his debut on the Bristol Old Vic stage as Mercutio.
What family has not wrestled with the question of how we care for our parents as they become older and frailer? Who will love them? Who will support them? Who will pay for their care?
And with that care, what controls should we apply? If we have taken power of attorney, what about the freedom to fall in love, to give gifts, to marry unwisely?
As Ben Power's recent two-handed exploration of passionate love remembered in old age demonstrated, Shakespeare's text is a powerful love story for any generation.
Signed, Captioned and Audio Described Performances.
Signed performance: Sat 10 April 2.30pm
Captioned performance: Sat 17 April 2.30pm
Audio described performance: Sat 24 April 2.30pm
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