Alarmed by the autocrat’s popularity, the educated élite conspire to bring him down. After his assassination, civil war erupts on the streets of the capital.
Nicholas Hytner’s production will be in promenade, thrusting its audience into the street party that greets Caesar’s return, the congress that witnesses his murder, the rally that assembles for his funeral and the chaos that explodes in its wake. Ben Whishaw and Michelle Fairley play Brutus and Cassius, leaders of the coup, David Calder plays Caesar and David Morrissey is Mark Antony, who brings Rome back under control after the conspirators’ defeat.
With seating wrapped around the action, there will also be 250 promenading tickets at £25 available in advance for each performance. The production designer is Bunny Christie, with costumes by Christina Cunningham, lighting by Bruno Poet and music by Nick Powell.
Julius Caesar will be broadcast on National Theatre Live in March 2018.
Hytner's triumph is an accessible, thoughtful and involving production.
Michelle Fairley is not the first female Cassius...but she brings to the part exactly the right intensity, passion and political pragmatism.
Nicholas Hytner proves again that Shakespeare's plays can be powerfully pertinent for today.
Morrissey is electrifying as Mark Antony.