CONTEMPORARY SOCIETY AND SHAKESPEARE’S POLITICAL EPIC COLLIDE IN
MEASURE FOR MEASURE
FEATURED AT ARTSEMERSON
BY CHEEK BY JOWL AND THE PUSHKIN THEATRE MOSCOW ——
SIX PERFORMANCES ONLY – OCTOBER 24-28, 2018 EMERSON CUTLER MAJESTIC THEATRE, BOSTON
Boston’s leading presenter of contemporary world theatre, proudly welcomes Cheek by Jowl (UK) and The Pushkin Theatre Moscow (Russia) with Measure for Measure. This production of Shakespeare’s play by the international award-winning director Declan Donnellan and designer Nick Ormerod asks vital and unsettling questions about how we are governed and, in the process, unmasks the true nature of authority, love and justice. Performed in Russian with English surtitles, The Pushkin Theatre Moscow and Cheek by Jowl will share Shakespeare’s tale through an unsettling dissection of power and shame that is as shocking as it is revelatory. The Times (London) calls the cast of Measure for Measure electrifyingly intense and disturbing that they make your hair stand on end.” Novaya Gazeta calls it “a shattering portrait of contemporary Russia.”
“Throughout our nine seasons, we’ve forged deep connections with Russian artists and narratives as part of our ‘World on Stage’ commitment,” says artistic director David Dower. “Declan Donnellan is similarly rooted in cross cultural exchange; his collaboration with Moscow’s Pushkin Theater is a perfect pairing for us. Donnellan’s visceral, visually audacious staging is stunning and his all-Russian cast is masterful. Shakespeare’s classically ‘problematic play’ suddenly emerges as a fresh, sharp, and emotionally powerful tale of our own problematic times.”
About Measure for Measure
Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure was written between 1603 and 1604, classified initially as a comedy. However, the production history exemplifies the complex nature of the play, each with a nearly unique perspective. The story takes place in Vienna under Lord Angelo’s iron-fist rule. He revives forgotten laws on morality and sexual license and decides to make an example of Claudio, a young man who has had pre-marital sex with his fiancée, Juliet. Hearing of Claudio’s death sentence, his sister the novitiate Isabella resolves to petition Angelo for her brother’s life. Despite his outward strict moral code, Angelo tells Isabella he will only free her brother if she sacrifices her virginity to him.
The limited run of only six performances takes place October 24 through 28, 2018 at the Emerson Cutler Majestic Theatre, located at 219 Tremont Street in downtown Boston.