Commissioned by the Royal Shakespeare Company
Adapted and directed by Sulayman Al-Bassam
Richard III: An Arab Tragedy
In this world of tribal allegiances, family in-fighting, and absolute power, the questions of leadership, religion, and foreign intervention at the heart of Shakespeare's play take on powerful new meanings in a modern Arab-Islamic context. Accompanied by a live musical score, "this is a punchy, irreverent makeover that retools Shakespeare for the world of Saddam, the CIA, and the House of Saud" (London's The Guardian). Al-Bassam and his international company of "poetic, intensely physical, and marvelously inventive" (The Scotsman) artists offer a riveting window into the richness of Arabian Gulf culture--from its social customs and musical heritage to some of its darker mystical rituals. Performed in Arabic with English surtitles.
Performance Plus: On March 6, join a post-performance discussion, free with your performance ticket.
Part of ARABESQUE: Arts of the Arab World
- VIDEO: “Kuwaiti Theater Director Finds Modern Inspiration in Shakespeare” (NewsHour, Feb. 24, 2009)
- About Theater at the Kennedy Center
Watch and Listen
A behind-the-scenes look at Richard III: An Arab Tragedy
A. Huda and Samia Farouki
The State of Kuwait
The State of Qatar
The United Arab Emirates Embassy in Washington, D.C.
Additional support is provided by the Ministry of Culture and Information, Kingdom of Bahrain; the Sultan Qaboos Cultural Center; The Qatar Foundation for Education, Science, and Community Development; the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art; Alice and David Rubenstein; Saudi Aramco; the Ford Foundation; Elizabeth and Michael Kojaian; Elaine and Steve Wynn; Ambassador Elizabeth Frawley Bagley and Mr. Smith Bagley; The Laura Pels Foundation; and the Kennedy Center International Committee on the Arts.Presented in cooperation with the League of Arab States.
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