Military leader Othello passes over his ensign, Iago, for a promotion in favor of young Cassio. Seeking revenge, master manipulator Iago seeds Othello's mind with mistrust for his new bride Desdemona. The lies spread like wildfire clouding Othello's vision for what is true and what is false. The flame of jealousy fills him with self-doubt, destroying his once-happy marriage. With soaring language and psychological depth, Shakespeare creates a highly charged tale that roars to a crashing conclusion.
Running time: 2 hours and 45 minutes with one intermission.
Please note: this production contains open flame, fog effects, strobe light effects, and nudity.
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John Langs (Director), Jennifer Zeyl (Set Designer), Doris Black (Costume Designer), Geoff Korf (Lighting Designer), Tristian Roberson (Projection Designer), Robertson Witmer (Sound Designer), Robin Macartney (Props Designer), Ruth Eitemiller (Stage Manager)
CAST (in alphabetical order)
Rob Burgess (Brabantio), Hillary Clemens (Desdemona), J. Samuel Cowan (Soldier), Trick Danneker (Roderigo), Quinn Franzen (Cassio), Jim Gall (Montano/Senator), Soren Michael Gillaspy (Soldier), Keiko Green (Bianca), Darragh Kennan (Iago), David Anthony Lewis (Duke/Lodovico), Sean Phillips (Othello), Lorenzo Roberts (Soldier), Alexandra Tavares (Emilia).
Iago, ensign to the general Othello, is enraged by the preferment of Michael Cassio to lieutenant over himself. Iago is bent on revenge, and Othello’s lack of guile leaves him vulnerable.
Othello has married Desdemona without her father’s consent and is brought before the duke of Venice. The duke is impressed by Othello’s honesty and by Desdemona’s loyalty to him and encourages her father to accept the marriage. He also enlists Othello’s services to fight the Turks. Othello and Desdemona arrive in Cyprus, where they find that the Turkish fleet has already been destroyed by a storm. During the ensuing celebrations, Iago gets Cassio drunk and spurs him on to a brawl that results in his dismissal from Othello’s service.
Iago works to convince Othello that Cassio is sleeping with Desdemona. He gradually establishes this suspicion in Othello’s mind, while denying that he himself believes it. Desdemona notices her husband’s sudden coolness toward her and confides in Emilia, Iago’s wife. Unaware of Iago’s scheme, Emilia assists him by procuring a handkerchief that was given to Desdemona as a keepsake by Othello. When it turns up in Cassio’s possession, Othello is convinced of his wife’s infidelity. He smothers her to death in their bed, only to find out from Emilia that it was she who stole the kerchief for Iago. Overwhelmed by guilt, he attempts to kill Iago, then stabs himself, dying at his wife’s side.
Iago is arrested and refuses to explain his motives or to confess his crimes, stoically accepting a sentence of death by torture.
Adapted from Shakespeare Genealogies by Vanessa James