Dystopian Shakespeare: reimagined and more relevant than ever!
Contemporary civilisation as we know it has collapsed. Amidst the ruins and dust, a group of storytellers present Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar to examine where humanity went wrong.
Director Jo Loth powerfully integrates her backgrounds in cabaret, physical theatre and Shakespearean performance, and joins forces with Matilda Award-winning designer Angel Kosch, to deliver a chilling premonition of humanity’s future. The performance features an original soundscape, evocative movement and a stellar ensemble cast including Lucinda Shaw (from acclaimed Brisbane band Silver Sircus) and Rainee Skinner (ABC’s The Wayne Manifesto).
Due to the overwhelmingly positive response to the original production at The Events Centre, Caloundra, in August 2017, this show is being re-developed for presentation at The Brisbane Powerhouse. Director Jo Loth comments “I think the show struck such a chord with audiences because we’re all worried about humanity’s future, and we’re asking: ‘Where can we go from here? How do we redeem humanity?’. Last year audiences really connected to the post- apocalyptic vision of the show, the re-gendering of the major roles, and our use of movement and music, so it’s great to have the opportunity to revisit these elements.”
“The 2018 version of the show also looks towards a more hopeful vision of the future. We have set the stage in a post-apocalyptic ‘worst-case-scenario’ after humans have all but destroyed the earth, and a group of performing players challenge their audience to learn from the past so as not to repeat the same mistakes. The show goes to some very dark places in order to search for the light.”
Multi-talented actor/ designer Angel Kosch, described by Stage Whispers as “a commanding presence”, reprises the lead role of Brutus. Over a period of 12 years, Angel worked as an actor and designer with Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble and received a Matilda Award for her design of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2013. Rainee Skinner will also reprise her acclaimed performance as Mark Antony. Rainee’s extensive experience includes performances for La Boite Theatre Company, Sydney Theatre Company and Nimrod (now Belvoir Street) and numerous film and theatre productions, most notably ABC’s The Wayne Manifesto. Actor/singer Lucinda Shaw joins the cast from her recent performances in “The Sound of a Finished Kiss” (Brisbane Powerhouse) and “Fire walk with us” (Melbourne Cabaret Festival).
Lucinda will bring her haunting vocal presence to the original songs created for this performance by composer Luke Ferguson, and she will breathe new life into the roles of The Soothsayer and Calpurnia (Caesar’s wife).
Director Jo Loth’s career highlights include: performing the role of Hamlet’s “Gertrude” at Tadashi Suzuki’s International Theatre Festival in Japan; performing her original cabaret songs at The Brisbane Cabaret Festival and The Brisbane Festival; and directing performances at La Mama Theatre, Melbourne and for The Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble, QUT and USC.
“Jo Loth has succeeded admirably. We are in a dystopian world on a stripped-down stage… Cassius and Brutus emerge and the machinations of the plot start to evolve in a skilfully edited 95-minute version of the text… Ear-splitting static accompanied the frenzied stabbing of Caesar (a brutally poetic scene), while music punctuated the action.” Peter Pinne, Stage Whispers.
Wednesday 7 – Saturday 10 November
Visy Theatre, Brisbane Powerhouse