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‘Britannicus’ at Lyric Hammersmith sets full cast

Jean Racine’s tragedy is newly adapted and set in modern-day Rome.

Sophie Thomas
Sophie Thomas

Find out the full casting for a new adaptation of Britannicus at Lyric Hammersmith, which begins performances next month. Britannicus begins previews at Lyric Hammersmith on 26 May, with an opening night on 1 June and performances to 25 June.

Jean Racine’s Britannicus play follows Agrippina as she battles to ensure her son, Nero, will be the Roman emperor, even though Britannicus is the rightful heir. As ruler, Nero becomes dizzy with power and grows into an oppressive tyrant.

Nathaniel Curtis will play the title role in the upcoming play. Previously, Curtis starred in the award-winning television series It’s A Sin. The Britannicus cast includes Shyvonne Ahmmad as Junia, Nigel Barrett as Narcissus, Hanna Khogali as Albine, Helena Lymbery as Burrhus, Sirine Saba as Agrippina and William Robinson as Emperor Nero.

Britannicus is newly adapted and translated by Timberlake Wertenbaker and directed by Atri Banerjee.

“From antiquity to the present day, we’ve always felt the corrosive effects of unchecked authoritarianism” said Banerjee of Britannicus’ cultural relevance.

“Right now, we feel them in war in Ukraine; election in France; parties in our very own seats of power as the country is ravaged by pandemic. Britannicus dramatises the point when a “good” leader turns bad and so has never felt more relevant. Racine drew upon the political landscape of 17th century France to tell a story of 1st century Rome: in it, we see 21st century Britain.”

Britannicus set and costume design is by Rosanna Vize, with lighting design by Lee Curran, composition and sound design by Jasmin Kent Rodgman and movement direction by Jennifer Jackson.

Britannicus is at Lyric Hammersmith.

Photo credit: Britannicus (Photo by Ellie Kurtzz)

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