In a time where bear baiting, dog fighting and public executions were the source of entertainment, William Shakespeare sought to find a theatrical equivalent that could compete. Now over four hundred years later, his finished work, Titus Andronicus, makes its way onto The Court's mainstage to play to Christchurch audiences.

In his day, Shakespeare was known as 'the writer of Titus Andronicus'. It was his first tragedy, his unrivalled hit and the play that propelled him into stardom.

The story is set during the latter days of the Roman Empire and follows Titus, a war hero who returns from twenty years of campaigning against Rome's enemies to find his home divided by partisan squabbling. His attempts to restore order to the city he loves unleash the very forces that will tear both the city and his family to pieces, setting off a chain reaction of betrayal, murder and revenge that leaves no one unscathed.

The Court's Associate Director, Dan Bain, makes his mainstage directorial debut with Titus. "I'm excited to create a show that should feel like a roller-coaster ride. Fast moving, occasionally sickening but ultimately thrilling," Bain says. "It's like all of Game of Thrones in one evening. So, if you like Game of Thrones you will like it. If you like your theatre visceral you'll like it. If you come to the theatre to feel something, you will like it. It's dramatic. Things will happen. It'll be exciting."

To bring the story to life, Bain has compiled a stellar cast which includes Owen Black as Titus, Eilish Moran as the villainous Tamora, Cameron Douglas as Saturninus and Tom Trevella as Marcus Andronicus.

Supporting Bain in creating the world of Titus Andronicus are Tina Hutchison-Thomas on costumes, Chris Reddington on set, Hamish Oliver on sound and Giles Tanner on lights.

Bain had a very clear idea of what he wanted the show to look like, "I gave an in-depth brief to both my designers and they really ran with it. Tina's costumes look fantastic and Chris' set is simple but evocative," Bain says.

Hutchison-Thomas was excited by the opportunity to work on Titus, "I get to create the costumes for this unique world where we get to make the rules. I am only restrained by how much I can make and create by opening night!"

Bain is excited by the vision of his designers, "Everything is designed to pull out the theme, character and storytelling via the character's costume and set pieces. Nothing is on stage that isn't assisting the storytelling."

Titus Andronicus opens at The Court on February 17th and runs through until March 3rd.

Bookings: phone 03 963 0870 or visit

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