One of Shakespeare's most famous plays, The Merchant of Venice is a dark comedy and a timeless exploration of greed, racism, and the abuse of power. Antonio, a Merchant of Venice, needs ready cash to help his young friend court the rich and beautiful Portia. He goes to Shylock, a Jewish money lender who offers him a strange bargain. He will lend him the money but his collateral is a pound of Antonio's flesh! When the note comes due, Shylock demands his pound of flesh, in one of the theatre's most renowned and tension-filled courtroom scenes. "The quality of mercy is not strained..."