Theater: Antony & Cleopatra – West End Revival

Opened: September 18, 2018

Book by: William Shakespeare

West End Revival Cast: Ralph Fiennes, Sophie Okonedo, Tim McMullan, Tunji Kasim, Nicholas Le Prevost, Hannah Morrish, Sargon Yelda, Fisayo Akinade, Gloria Obianyo, Georgia Landers, Gerald Gyimah, Sam Woolf, Waleed Hammad, Alexander Cobb, Hiba Elchikhe, Katy Stephens, Nick Sampson, Ben Wiggins, Alan Turkington, Henry Everett, Shazia Nicholls, Samuel Arnold & Catherine Deevy

Director Samuel Godwin brings new life to Shakespeare’s classic tragedy with a modern setting and tour de force performance from Sophie Okonedo.

After the death of Julius Caesar, General Mark Antony (Ralph Fiennes) rules alongside fellow Rome defenders Octavius Caesar (Tunji Kasim) and Lepidus (Nicholas Le Prevost). Antony falls in a passionate love with Egypt’s Queen Cleopatra (Okonedo) and prepares for battle against Octavius, whom has scorned him.

This production is brought into modern times through its costumes and props – especially in the battle scenes. The juxtaposition between the setting and the language shows how this story could happen in today’s time.

While it’s hard to follow if you aren’t familiar with the characters’ stories or Shakespearian language, Okonedo is compelling to watch in one of Shakespeare’s best female roles.

Final say: The pros outweigh the cons. ★★★☆☆

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