Women Beware Women
Jacobean tragedy “Women Beware Women” returns to the stage, this time at the National Theatre where it will grace the prestigious Olivier stage of the Southbank venue. On stage and off it has an interesting story to tell as a complex plot of love seeks to tear apart the polite society of Florence.
Off stage, “Women Beware Women” is noted due to its ambiguous origins, both in the time that it was created and the credited author. Most people attribute the work to Thomas Middleton between 1612 and 1627, though there are some that contest this. What is certain is that it was first published in 1657 (with Middleton credited for the piece here) and over the ages it has remained a popular production that continues to be staged.
Set in Florence, polite society has found its match in the form of a complex love triangle. It begins with the search for a husband for Fabritio’s (James Hayes) daughter Isabella (Vanessa Kirby), who rejects the offers of countless bachelors before she is seduced by her own uncle Hippolito (Raymond Coulthard). Meanwhile, her auntie Livia (Harriet Walter) has procured Bianca (Lauren O’Neill) – the second wife of Francesco I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany - Leantio (Samuel Barnett). Livia subsequently seduces Leantio and a web of betrayal begins to ravel around the society they inhabit.
But the corruption that knows no bound will not be without consequences as the dark comedy that is “Women Beware Women” continues to its gripping conclusion.
The cast is made up of stage regulars, with Raymond Coulthard, who plays Hippolito, appearing following numerous works for the National Theatre. His credits include “The Coast of Utopia”, “The Merchant of Venice” and “Troilus and Cressida”, whilst productions for the Royal Shakespeare Society also appear on his CV. He has also made an impression on television with the likes of “Casualty”, “Hotel Babylon” and “Foyle’s War” amongst his credits.
The rest of the cast includes the likes of Chu Omambala, Harry Melling, Andrew Woodall, Nick Blood, Samuel James, Bryan Kennedy and more. It is likely to be an acclaimed and popular production of a comedy classic when it appears in 2010.
“Women Beware Women” is on the Olivier stage of the National Theatre from Tuesday 27th April 2010 (previews from Tuesday 20th April 2010) to Tuesday 8th June 2010.
||Tuesday, 20th April 2010
||Sunday, 4th July 2010
||Dates vary, check times.