Kadozuke Presents RICHARD III, Beginning Tonight
Celebrating its 10th anniversary, Toronto experimental theatre company Kadozuke Kollektif, in partnership with Bad New Days, presents the world premiere of Richard III, The Pleasures of Violence, Artistic Director Tatiana Jennings' provocative and innovative multimedia reimagining of the William Shakespeare classic. Richard III previews tonight, September 9, opens Wednesday September 10 and runs through to September 28 at Zuke Studios, the company's storefront home in the Junction.
Kadozuke Kollektif's most ambitious and complex work to date, Richard III, The Pleasures of Violence puts a humanistic spin on Shakespeare's political propaganda play. Intensely visual and highly choreographed, Jennings' Richard III explores the passion, violence and disaster that erupted in the family of three York brothers - Edward, Clarence and Richard - following the impulsive and secret love and marriage of Edward IV, King of England to Elizabeth Woodville.Jennings transforms the work into a sensual exploration of the humanity of the characters, partly by making unseen events of the traditional story visible for the first time. While faithful to Shakespeare's original text, Jennings subverts its overtly propagandistic content through the unexpected and extremely detailed behaviour of the performers onstage. A more real, human picture of the characters - including that of Richard III himself - emerges. Shakespeare's text is combined with 3D projection mapping, dynamic sets manipulated by actors and a poetic, physical style of acting that the company has developed over the last decade. The piece is performed by the ensemble with each of the performers playing multiple parts, seamlessly switching genders and ages: Barbara Amponsah (Elizabeth), Lacey Creighton (Lady Anne), Scott Edwards (Duke of Buckingham), David Fish (King Edward IV), Sefton Jackson (Earl Rivers), Shawn Lall (Lord Hastings), Lee McDonald (King Richard III), Caitlin Morris-Cornfield (Margaret, and Stage Manager) and Tyler Winn (Duke of Clarence). Jennings' fusion of striking organic stage sets with elaborate movement choreography and the detailed, almost filmic, acting style of the company creates a highly engaging audience experience. The long development periods, and unique style of collaboration, provides for an unmatched level of experimentation and accomplishment. See a teaser for the production here: http://zuke.ca/projects/richard-iii/ During the play's two-year development, the body of the real Richard III was discovered under a parking lot in Leicester, England; his identity confirmed by decoding the mitochondrial DNA of a Canadian man descended from the slain monarch's older sister. England's favourite villain king, the last of the Plantagenet dynasty, has become a more sympathetic figure as historians re-evaluate the role of this much maligned royal whose death marked the dawn of the modern era. In addition, Kadozuke Kollektif has expanded its reach into the community to create a series of outdoor performance installations that will be presented in the ten days leading up to the event. Members of the community, and the public in general, are invited to work with Jennings and her artists in a workshop setting to present these theatrical interventions.