Money makes the world go around. Portia has it. Bassanio wants it. Shylock lends it. Antonio owes the value of it. Love also plays a part. Portia offers it. Bassanio wants it. And Antonio may lose a pound of flesh for it.
NORPA is thrilled to welcome world acclaimed company, Bell Shakespeare, back to the stage of Lismore City Hall with their new production The Merchant of Venice for two evening performances on Thursday 7 and Friday 8 September.
Artistic Director, Peter Evans, said at the announcement earlier this year, “This uncompromising production explores the tense relationship and prejudices between those that have, and those that don’t. The themes of justice and revenge continue to play strongly 400 years after this play was written.”
Featuring three time Helpmann Award winner, Mitchell Butel (Janet King and Rake) as the defiant Shylock, and Jessica Tovey (Wolf Creek and Wonderland) as Portia, the production is directed by Anne-Louise Sarks (Belvoir’s Jasper Jones and Medea), this masterfully envisioned production tackles the prejudices and preconceived notions of one of Shakespeare’s most challenging plays.
Director Anne-Louise Sarks has developed a reputation for being unflinching in tackling difficult subjects.
“This is only the second time since becoming Artistic Director for Bell Shakespeare that we’ve invited a new director to join us in creating new work. Last year we were thrilled to be joined by Lee Lewis in directing The Literati. This year Anne-Louise Sarks takes the helm of our national tour and will get to present her work to 27 venues around Australia,” said Mr Evans.
Dark in its humour and bawdy in its romantic hijinks, The Merchant Of Venice takes audiences on a journey of love, mercy and justice.
"By any measure, this is great theatre. This is an intelligent close reading of the play. Little is overplayed, nothing is dodged. Shylock may be remembered as a career defining role for Mitchell Butel" The Australian