Coriolanus, Burning House Theatre

Presented in English   
May 20-19, 2016
Theatre works, Melbourne, Australia

Burning House Theatre
Director / Co-producer: Robert Johnson
Set Designer: James Lew
Lighting Designer: John Collopy
Composer/ Sound Designer: Liam Bellman-Sharpe
Production Manager: Marty Shlansky
Co-producer: Jessica Doutch

Caius Martius Coriolanus: Tom Heath
Virgilia: Charlotte Fox
Tullus Aufidius: Seton Pollock
Volumnia: Kerrie-Ann Baker
Brutus: Alexander Rouse
Cominius: Karlis Zaid
Menenius: David Meadows
Sicinius: Amy Bradney-George
Roman Soldier: Nicholas Rijs
Titus Latius: Paul Herbert

"The Tragedy of Coriolanus sometime seems to lie forgotten amongst the other tragedies in the Shakespearean canon. Upon an initial read, it’s easy to see why. At first glance Caius Marcius Coriolanus is thoroughly unlikeable. He is seen to be mean, arrogant and self-centred. We are given no clear antagonists, the play’s politics seem to lean a little too much to the right, and despite some excellent speeches, the language doesn’t seem to have struck the same chord that Hamlet or Macbeth does. Coriolanus is unique amongst Shakespearean heroes because he is not good at expressing himself. He does not deem us unworthy of his emotions or his thoughts, he is literally unable to share them.

Because of this, he, and the play that bears his name, have become deeply understood. He has become known as a tyrant, an arrogant, emotionally stunted child. Brecht called Coriolanus a tragedy because the hero was unable to grow. Olivier drew his inspiration from Mussolini in his playing of the character. Beyond his military qualities, his virtues tend to be overlooked. He is dedicated to self-improvement in a way that compares to no other character in English literature. He cares deeply for his family and friends, and refuses to compromise his moral system. This concept of self-improvement, of committing to oneself to the altitude of one’s virtue, is the beating heart of this play. Rome is tearing itself to shreds in its effort to better itself. It a play about compromise and commitment, of ascendance and acceptance. Make of it what you will." — Robert Johnson  

On Facebook: