Bard in the Botanics 2013 revists Othello in original setting
- Yasmin Sulaiman
- 10 June 2013
This year's season also features takes on Julius Caesar and Much Ado About Nothing
Bard in the Botanics first tackled Othello six years ago. But for Gordon Barr, artistic director of Glasgow's annual outdoor Shakespeare programme, the depth found in the Bard's classic tragedy in which a Moorish general in Venice is driven to murderous jealousy by his villainous advisor, made revisiting it inevitable. 'Othello always felt like one of those plays that I wanted to have another crack at,' Barr explains. 'It's a fascinating play, and it's a difficult play to get hold of and try and understand the process that Iago takes Othello on. It's fascinating for a director to follow that journey.'
This year's season also includes a modern take on Julius Caesar ('it's kind of Shakespeare meets Borgen') and Much Ado About Nothing, in which the central lovers Benedick and Beatrice become contemporary male partners Benedick and Bertram. Unusually for Bard in the Botanics, Othello will retain its original Shakespearean setting. 'It's something a little different for me,' Barr laughs. 'I've been artistic director here for ten years and never done a piece in Elizabethan dress. So, oddly, the most radical thing I could do with the play was to take it back to its original period.'
Botanic Gardens, Glasgow, Wed 19 Jun--Sat 6 Jul.