The Actor’s Wheel, 9-11 May 7:30pm Marjon Arts Centre – Plymouth, 23 May 7:30pm Cygnet Theatre – Exeter, 24 May 7:30pm Sterts Theatre – (near Liskeard), 26 May 7:30pm Barbican Theatre – Plymouth
I have come to expect an evening of unusual and emotional theatre from The Actor’s Wheel and this company did not disappoint. Every year they produce an adaptation of a Shakespeare play so if you are a fan of the great bard, this is a company worth following. This year we were treated to political thriller, ‘Julius Caesar’.
As many of us were taught in the history classroom, this tale is not a happy one. The emotions on stage were raw and the battles bloody. The choreography for main battle scene was mesmerising. We watched as soldiers fought with knives, guns and bare fists in slow motion. The strength and accuracy it took to execute this scene proved the dedication and skill of these performers.
The pause before the applause was testament to the thought provoking nature of the performance. Calpurnia (Sama Rantisi) poured her heart and soul into her performance and it seemed to all as if we really were witnessing her mourning the death of her soulmate.
Lucius emerged as an essential character in the second act. Emma Stephens playing Lucius gave a sincere performance and proved her commitment to her master, Brutus. She tries to calm Brutus with a song which she performed beautifully. It perfectly suited the atmosphere of the scene.
The traditional ending of a small rhyme could have been a more pronounced moment, especially since the words as so fitting to the occasion ‘…So call the field to rest; and let’s away, To part the glories of this happy day.’
Every actor played their part excellently from Mark Antony to Cassius to Brutus. All experience their own rollercoaster of emotions amidst a turbulent time in Roman history. Everyone knows what the history books say about Julius Caesar but nothing compares to seeing this story presented live by The Actor’s Wheel.