The Iconic Play Was Performed At The Repertory Theatre
Bethan Shuff || December 27th
The tale of Romeo and Juliet is a love story that most are familiar with; one of William Shakespeare’s most famous works.
The confusing, old-english text had always baffled me, however, this new, modern version of the play makes the story a lot more accessible and exciting for those who are put off by the Shakespearean jargon.
Set in a dystopian world, the Montague’s and Capulet’s are at war from the get go, with realistic fight scenes and actors literally flinging themselves across the stage and to the ground. This modern play features punks and drugs, bringing forth more issues than just the Love vs. Hate struggle.
Juliet, played by Sophie Wood, is a cute and casual character, lounging in her bedroom in converse and denim shorts listening to music whilst her mother, Lady Capulet snorts cocaine whilst shouting her so that she can tell her all about the man she wishes for Juliet to marry, Count Paris.
The next scene is a house party at The Capulet’s household, where Juliet in a white dress, yet still sporting converse, meets Paris, but catches the eye of Mr Montague and falls instantly in love with Romeo, played by Thomas Waldron. Energetic and thrilling dance choreography separates Romeo and Juliet, but it is not long before one of the most iconic scenes.
‘Romeo, oh Romeo, where for art thou Romeo?’. Why must she love someone that she must hate? So much innocent new love and excitement fills the scene in which a smitten Juliet and lovesick Romeo share an intimate moment with the intimate crowd.
Leo Capernaros plays a brilliant Mercutio, a cheeky character with a street-wise and punky attitude, and when slain by Tybalt, performs an incredibly realistic and convincing death that has you on the edge of your seat.
The first act ends with Benvolio regretfully admitting that Romeo was responsible for Tybalt’s death, leaving you itching to watch the rest of the show.
The second half of the show portrays the real struggle for Romeo and Juliet, and how they are forbidden to be together. A passionate and angry Juliet is told of the heart-breaking news, and is comforted by the Nurse before her father’s anger only makes her love and will to see Romeo stronger, all the while, Juliet’s marriage to Paris is fast approaching.
A final scene sees the famous death of both lovers, where Romeo sees Juliet lay upon the spot-lit stage in a death-like state, and injects himself with poison and Juliet awakens and kills herself as well.
Absolutely brilliant acting from the whole cast, particularly Romeo, Juliet, the Nurse and Mercutio. The modern day twist took the traditional story to a totally new level, making it exciting, despite knowing the story line.