The noble Titus returns victorious to Rome bringing Tamora, Queen of the Goths as his captive. When one of Tamora's sons is condemned to die, she vows revenge, and, aided by the villainous Aaron, she exacts a terrible retribution, inaugurating a grim cycle of rape, murder, and cannibalism. This macabre, often brilliant tragedy comes from the earliest stage of Shakespeare's dramatic career.
Titus is played by David Troughton and Tamora by Harriet Walter. Paterson Joseph is Aaron, and David Burke is Marcus.
Public Domain (P)2014 Blackstone Audio
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"My tears are now prevailing orators!"
"And let me say, that never wept before,
My tears are now prevailing orators!"
- William Shakespeare, Titus Andronicus, Act III.1
Shakespeare's first Tragedy is not perfect. It is bloody, predictable, racist, and gratuitous to the extreme. However, it probably deserves better attention than it usually gets (well there is the Julie Taymor film). I think this early Shakespeare's villain (Aaron the Moor) is diabolical and fantastic. Yes, I'm not a fan of the easy way the moor (or often the Jew) becomes the bad guy in Shakespeare's plays, but I'm also not a fan (at all) of judging Shakespeare by a morality that the 21st century only so far corrects. We have plenty of racist motes in our own eyes, thank you very much. I love the wickedness of the Goth Queen Tamora. I love Titus and his brother Marcus. Again, the poetry is not fully mature. The plot is still a bit overripe and overwrought. But ye gads, Shakespeare's pen can still pull some dangerous couplets out of the air.
There were also several nice lines, specifically:
- "For shame, be friends, and join for that you jar.
'Tis policy and stratagem must do
That you affect; and so you must resolve,
That what you cannot as you would achieve,
You must perforce accomplish as you may.
- "Do not draw back, for we will mourn with thee,
O, could our mourning ease thy misery!"
- "Let fools do good, and fair me call for grace,
Aaron will have his should black like his face."
- "Now is the time to storm; why art thou still?"
- "Can the son's eye behold his father bleed?
There's meed for meed, death for a deadly deed!"
- "For when no friends are by, men praise themselves."
- "If one good deed in all my life I did,
I do repent it from my very soul."
Loved it, really helped that I looked along with the complete text from open source. Really me understand the plot at first pass so I can have the knowledge for acting class.
A review requires at least fifteen words. Why, they they are all, baked in that pie.
"Gruesome but compelling"
A gruesome play, which shows that Tarantino is not new. The performances made it a compelling study in the power of a desire for revenge and the terrible effects that emotion produces.
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