**University of Birmingham Guild of Students**
The Lamentable Tragedy of Titus Andronicus is a play by William Shakespeare set in Rome after a long bloody war with the Goths. Whilst Titus is caught up in gory cycle of revenge with Tamora, he is seemingly unaware that all the brutalities inflicted upon his family are devised or executed by the nomadic, super-villain Aaron.
This play is by far one of Shakespeare’s bloodiest, with statistically 5.2 atrocities per act, and is sure to be filled to the brim with action.
Using elements of physical theatre, dance and an intricate sound-track, the talented cast of 13 work together as a tight ensemble to portray an empire in pandemonium. This vibrant, stylised take on Shakespeare’s deep cut brings a twist to the play by throwing the audience into a world of virtual reality. All overseen by a controlling, manipulative computer geek assuming the persona of Aaron inside the sadistic politically driven game filled with mindless violence.
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This is ’the study of a man who fights, for a Rome he does not understand, against a barbaric tribe he does not think worth understanding. When he allows this Rome to form an alliance with these barbarians, they take revenge on him too terrible to contemplate and yet curiously just. Titus is the victim of his own strict code and his own grandeur. In this respect, he is a universal figure and the play is a tract for our times.
No history book contains the general, the emperor, the blackamoor and the barbaric empress who dominate the play.’ (Written by R.E)
‘This play was a smash hit in its day, one of Shakespeare’s earliest successes, dating back to 1593.’
(Both the above extracts are from a 1963 original Birmingham Repertory Theatre Programme of this play.)
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