A Bold Modern Staging Of Measure For Measure
Shakespeare's ability to cross the boundaries of colour, gender and even language often makes his works the perfect vehicles for contemporary contextualisation. Measure for Measure, the bard's mediation on the complex relationship between moral and civil justice, as well as the dichotomy of corruption and purity, makes its way to Boston's Cutler Majestic Theatre in a radical, updated staging born from the collaboration between London's Cheek by Jowl theatre company and Moscow's Pushkin Theatre.
Transporting the action to modern day Russia, the co-production taps into the text's sense of a governmental experiment gone wrong. Government official Angelo is unwavering in his quest to rid the land of its brothels and unlawful sexual activity, tangling up innocent people in the fray. One such unfortunate is Claudio, accused of sex before marriage even though he was betrothed to his beloved at the time and the act was consensual. Of course, absolute power corrupts absolutely, and Angelo crosses the already blurry line of morality when he propositions the noviciate nun Isabella in exchange for the life of her fornicating brother Claudio.