MERCHANT OF VENICE Set for the Lost Theatre, Nov 11-16
The Merchant of Venice is perhaps most famous for its portrayal of anti-Semitism, through the character of Shylock. However, often overlooked is the theme of social class. This runs throughout the play; from the way Shylock is treated as a Jew, to Portia the rich heiress who is almost enslaved by her money, and Antonio the 'good man' bailed out by the court system with barely concealed bias.
It is these themes that take centre stage in Attune Theatre's contemporary production set in Las Vegas, the 'City of Sin, a city with an entire economy built on its Casino Culture. Attune's production questions what sort of world would create a man like Shylock, and how much resonance that has in the post recession world.
John Love, the actor portraying Shylock, suggests the play focuses on "How much racial and social exclusion, abuse or ridicule can one person take before they break. The lines of right and wrong; good and bad; acceptable and unacceptable, are blurred for a lot of people these days".
It was this grey morality that Director, Stewart Schiller, took on in his portrayal of the whole world of the play: "I actually came up with the idea years ago when I was comparing the Elizabethan portrayal of Venice with the contemporary portrayal of Vegas. Since then though, the post Recession bail out culture really made me question the ending of the play in a whole new light."
This show marks Attune Theatre's second show at Lost Theatre in Wandsworth, after a successful run of their show Belief Beyond Hope at Lost Theatre's One Act Festival in 2012.
The show runs at Lost Theatre, 208 Wandsworth Road, London, SW8 2JU, 11th - 16th November. Time: 7:30pm. Telephone Box Office: 0844 847 1680.
Director: Stewart Schiller. Cast; John Love, Simon Devon, Julie Martis, Paul Dundas, Simon Weir, Martin Haddow, Stephanie Gallacher, Jamie Lee McPherson & Neal Roxburgh. Design & Sound: Finn Townsley. Lighting: Robbie Duncan. Music: Kapil Seshayaee.