Double delight with Bard’s classic and director’s take

The Greater Morpeth Development Trust (GMDT) has pulled off a twin coup for an exciting theatre evening it is planning later this month.

Thursday, 4th April 2019, 1:55 pm

The trust has not only secured a Morpeth screening of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s acclaimed production of the Bard’s Othello, but also a personal appearance in the town by its director Iqbal Khan.

Iqbal will introduce the evening, followed by a talk, and a question and answer session with the audience at the end of the show.

The production of Shakespeare’s heartbreaking tragic tale of love, jealousy and deceit was filmed live during a performance in Stratford-upon-Avon, which featured in the title role Hugh Quarshie, perhaps best known to television audiences as Dr Ric Griffin, the longest serving cast member of the BBC television medical drama Holby City.

But it was also a ground-breaking production in that the part of Iago was played for the first time by a black actor, Lucian Msmati.

The special screening of Othello takes place on Saturday, April 13, starting at 6pm, at Morpeth Town Hall.

Tickets at £12 are available from GMDT on 01670 503866, The Chantry TIC, Morpeth Town Hall or Ticket Source. The ticket price includes refreshments.

The RSC evening follows two successful events organised by GMDT last year — a screening of The Audience featuring Helen Mirren, followed by a performance of Madam Butterfly recorded at the Royal Opera House in London.

Frank Rescigno, GMDT’s Director of Arts and Culture, said: “Since we successfully launched the cinema eight years ago we have built up a solid audience, enjoying some excellent movie screenings on their own doorsteps. Lately, people began asking us to look at the idea of introducing other productions involving, for example, the RSC, the Royal Ballet and the National Theatre.

“We are delighted to have been able to do that and on this occasion to present Othello, not just because it is a wonderful production, but for the fact that such a renowned director as Iqbal Khan is personally coming to Morpeth to talk about the play and his work.

“It promises to be a very special evening indeed and one not to be missed.”

The trust has its own quality screening equipment bought with grant aid, which enables it to stage its monthly cinema evenings, and now the theatre and opera nights that are also taking place.