Tis Pity She’s a Whore OFF-BROADWAY REVIEWS

Photo: Sara Krulwich
  • NY TIMES

  • Opening Night:
    April 14, 2015
    Closing:
    May 16, 2015

    Theater: The Duke On 42nd Street / 229 W 42nd Street, New York, NY, 10036

    Synopsis: 

    What if Romeo and Juliet were brother and sister? Find out in this daring and provocative thriller. Red Bull Theater drives into the heart of its mission with the bloodiest and sexiest of all Jacobean tragedies. This heart-pounding tale of love, lust and hypocrisy is a deliciously perverse romantic tragedy. Siblings Annabella and Giovanni fall into an incestuous affair with a brutal velocity that sets Renaissance Parma aflame with its passionate force. Defiant in their desires to the bloody end, these lovers take “star-crossed” into a whole new galaxy. This crown jewel of Jacobean drama has scandalized and enthralled audiences for four centuries with its singular journey through the fires of desire.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF Tis Pity She’s a Whore

    In ‘’Tis Pity,’ Forbidden Love, the Most Attractive Kind

    Charles Isherwood

    April 28, 2015: As lovers go, this pair would seem to be perfectly matched. They share a fair, pallid beauty, the bloom of youth just discovering the wonder of romance, the intimate knowledge of one another’s charms born of a longstanding relationship. ’Tis pity, however, that they happen to be brother and sister. You might say that Giovanni (Matthew Amendt) and Annabella (Amelia Pedlow), the blood-tied central characters in John Ford’s “ ’Tis Pity She’s a Whore,” are about as star-crossed from the get-go as you could get. Despite all Giovanni’s tortured rationales justifying their incestuous love, we somehow know, from the moment we witness their first sexual embrace, that things will not turn out swimmingly for this pair — unless you mean swimmingly in blood. In any case, let’s give a lusty cheer to the red-blooded Red Bull Theater Company for staging this rarely seen play from the English Renaissance, generally dated from the first years of the 1630s. Although this enterprising troupe has fairly minimal resources compared with the city’s major nonprofit theaters, its members have far more adventurous, indeed admirable, tastes when it comes to choosing repertory. (To my knowledge, the only major American troupe to stage the play recently is the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco, in 2008.)

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