Actors from Broadway and London’s West End team up for the Shakespeare@ Home, all-free radio play Julius Caesar, which launches Monday February 22nd at 7pm EST. The Tony Nominated actor Patrick Page (Hadestown) stars in the title role with Jordan Barbour (Broadway’s The Inheritance) as Brutus. Sky Lakota Lynch (Dear Evan Hansen) as Lucius and Keith Hamilton Cobb (American Moor) as Cassius. Produced by Jersey City’s Shakespeare@, this audio production is the third installment of the season, produced and adapted by Artistic Director Sean Hagerty.
Acclaimed West End actors Jamie Ballard and James Howard also star. Mr. Howard played Draco Malfoy to Ballard’s Harry Potter in the West End production of Harry Potter and The Cursed Child, prior to the shutdown. Julius Caesar features original music and sound design and is free to download and stream. Hagerty has crafted the production into four weekly parts and partnered with the Emmy-winning team at Sonic Designs to capture the lost art and thrill of radio drama all without leaving the confines of quarantine. Shakespeare@ made an auspicious live debut in 2019 with Hamlet starring Jonathan Forbes and released their first ‘radio’ plays of the season with Richard II and The Tempest for their newly created Shakespeare@ Home series in 2020. To listen to Julius Caesar online, visit www.shakespeare-at.org. The production will also be available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud, and Stitcher. The performance is free to all listeners on all platforms. Previous episodes of the season (Richard II and The Tempest) are also available to download.
Debut dates for parts 2, 3 and 4 of Julius Caesar are subsequent Mondays at 7pm EST on March 1st, and March 8th, The final episode will premiere on March 15th—the “Ides of March” (the day Caesar was assassinated).
In order to best serve quarantined audiences, Shakespeare@ has specialized, for now, on reviving radio drama and programming Shakespeare@ Home. The distinguished cast features acclaimed talent from the New York Stage, and London’s West End and stars Tony-nominee Patrick Page (Broadway’s Hadestown) as Julius Caesar, Jordan Barbour (Broadway’s The Inheritance) as Brutus, Keith Hamilton Cobb (American Moor) as Cassius, Jamie Ballard (Harry Potter in Harry Potter in the West End) as Mark Antony, James Howard (Draco Malfoy in Harry Potter in the West End) as Metellus Cimber, Sky Lakota-Lynch (Broadway’s Dear Evan Hansen) as Lucius, Ashlie Atkinson (Mr. Robot, BlacKkKlansman) as Portia, Jonathan Forbes (Amazon’s Catastrophe) as Casca, and Aria Shahghasemi (CW’s Legacies) as Octavius. Rounding out the rest of the cast are RSC and National Theatre veteran, David Hargreaves, Mark Torres, Thia Stephan, Francis Mateo, and Mark J. Quiles.
Julius Caesar is one of Shakespeare’s best known and most often quoted plays, chronicling the political and moral crisis of Brutus and his fellow conspirators as they plot to murder Caesar to prevent a dictatorship. First performed in 1599, this timeless play examines the razor-thin line between power and corruption, duty and ambition, and the perils of a state divided.
Shakespeare@ was founded to deliver accessible interpretations of classic works with a focus on international and cross-cultural exchange. Its live performance debut, a lush 2019 production of Hamlet starring Jonathan Forbes, garnered rave reviews and was hailed as “theatrical perfection,” selling out its run at Grace Church Van Vorst in Jersey City. Hagerty says, “After our 2020 season was lost, we re-structured our format to continue productions, employ artists, and serve our mission.” He conceived the all-sonic performance project, Shakespeare@ Home, to recapture the great heyday of serialized radio drama of the 1930’s and 40’s. The first two productions, Richard II and The Tempest received accolades from critics and audiences alike.
Director Sean Hagerty views the play as incredibly timely, explaining “In our current fractured, hostile, and divided discourse, I have always felt the play particularly resonant. But in the past few months alone, as we have watched our nation slip perilously close to the cliff-edge of democracy, I can think of few better plays that cry out to be heard.”
In addition to launching their third all-free, all-audio drama, Shakespeare@ has partnered with Robert Young, the former Director of Education at the world-renowned Folger Shakespeare Library and a team of educators, to launch their Education Initiative with dynamic, multi-media study guides to accompany each of their radio plays. Featuring activities and lesson plans designed to be used in a classroom or virtual setting, the guides feature cast and crew interviews, with in-depth audio and video tracks highlighting different aspects of the play, the artistic choices, and history. These study guides are free to schools and qualifying educational institutions. For more information visit the website or email email@example.com.
Julius Caesar features original music composed by Joan Melton with sound design by the Emmy-winning team of Dan Gerhard and Ellen Fitton of Sonic Designs. Justin Goldner is the music producer and supervisor, and casting is by Robin Carus. Sydney Steele serves as the Associate Producer.