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Shakespeare´s Titus Andronicus for the second time in Slovakia, the first time in Košice

State Theatre Košice is the second theatre in Slovakia to include William Shakespeare´s play Titus Andronicus. its dramaturgical plan. The Drama of the State Theatre Košice will premiere it on 3rd March at the Small Stage as its first premiere of 2023, directed by Anton Korenči. The popular Slovak actor Peter Kočiš, students of the Conservatory in Košice, Academy of Arts in Banská Bystrica and Academy of the Performing Arts in Bratislava will perform as guests of the Drama for the first time besides the local actors.

„ The play Titus Andronicus stands at the beginning of W. Shakespeare´s great work. It is actually his first tragedy. It is not often staged, however, while discussing the falling Roman Empire, its threat from barbarians, war and clash of civilizations, the origin of evil, violence and cruelty in man it seems more than relevant. In an idea plan it brings a captivating picture of betrayal and revenge, bloodlust for power and the fateful fall of protagonists. In the play, Shakespeare builds up on the great works of ancient drama. However, the motive of revenge takes place on the background of social upheavals and, as experts of Shakespeare´s work say, it is also a tragedy of the state. The production is at the same time an introduction to the non-representative works of English dramatist, an attempt to depict the madness of the mechanism of power and the moral failures of individuals in modern language.“, the creators write in annotation of the new production.

Although this play by Shakespeare is referred to as his bloodiest tragedy, in Košice it has the subtitle “A tenderly tragic poetry about clash of civilizations, war and violence“. „We were intrigued by the topic, the analysis of the nature of violence and cruelty in man, therefore our goal is not to shock the audience with violence, but rather to allow them to keep a distance from it, to see where it comes from, what motivates it and also to try to shed some light on the current chaotic and often unclear time, that’s why we chose a form that should not discourage the viewer, but rather bring a cathartic, aesthetic and cognitive experience; and, last but not least, to entertain – Shakespeare is full of humour even in tragedies…”, explains the director of the Drama, Anton Korenči, who also adapted Shakespeare´s translated text for the needs of new production.

The stage was designed by Ondrej Zachar, costumes by Silvia Korenči Zubajová, with addition of music by Jozef Vlk and masks by Juraj Steiner. Andrej Petrovič is collaborating on the movement aspect of the new drama production.

The role of Aron will be played by Peter Kočiš, alternated by František Balog. Other roles include Andrej Palko as Saturninus, Juraj Zetyak and a guest Michal Novodomský alternate as Bassianus, Matej Marušin as Titus Andronicus, Jakub Kuka as Marcus Andronicus, guest Oliver Asztalos as Lucius, guests Šimon Širilla and Juraj Štefanišin as Quintus and Martius, Daniel Wolczko as young Titus, Tomáš Diro as Demetrius, Martin Stolár as Chiron. The director entrusted the role of Lavinia to Jana Balková and Laura Jankurová, Beáta Drotárová will play the role of Nurse and Peter Cibula will play the role of Messenger/Jester.