This new interpretation of Romeo and Juliet choreographed by Tony Adigun and designed by Bettina John. Combining contemporary east London fashion with the Elizabethan style of Shakespeare’s time Bettina John catapults the aesthetic of the play into the 21st century.
About this interpretation
Adigun developed a fast-pace, physical theatre promenade version of the world famous play which unfolds through the streets of London. The real protagonists of this interpretation are the two families – the Capulets and the Montagues. Audience members become part of a thrilling fight between two gangs.
The company uses 3D sound design and the streets of Blackfriars to create a cinematic journey through Shakespeare’s epic love story. The show has dance and musicality at its heart, but is essentially a theatre production. Tony Adigun’s choreography and direction create a production that literally uses the cityscape as the stage. Shakespeare’s text is adapted by spoken word artist and theatre-maker Maxwell Golden.
The costume design approach
The distinct contemporary interpretation of elizabethan fashion helps relocating the story onto the streets of London today. The Montagues aka the dogs were kept in browns and mustard whereas the Capulets aka the cats were kept in reds and bordeaux to have a clear distinction of the two groups. That way the audience was able to keep track more easily whilst following the performers throughout the play. The Prince of Verona was kept in beige and green and the Friar in brown to keep them neutral and outside the colour range of the two groups.
The show has been commissioned by Southwark Council (as part of Blackfriars Stories) and The National Theatre’s Watch This Space Festival. Remarkable Productions gratefully acknowledges support from Arts Council England Grants for the Arts Programme using funds from the National Lottery.
Photographs Bettina John