Actors' Shakespeare Project kicks off 2017 with Christopher Marlowe's complex Edward II, a play about the notorious English king who forsook everything for his public and private passions — only to meet horrific ends at the hands of his queen and his conniving noblemen.
Marlowe used the tumultuous history of 14th-century England to share one man's struggle between self-identity and the demands of his court and kingdom. Now his Edward II is presented in a taut new version that pares the play to eight characters to suit its intensity and the intimate performance space. In the wake of Edward I's death, his son has taken the throne as Edward II. His radical ideas around affairs of state, lack of military acumen, and loyalty to his ambitious lover Piers Gaveston pit him against powerful nobles and his calculating Queen Isabella. These conflicts lead to Gaveston's exile and murder, new and shifting romantic loyalties on all sides, and revenge and retribution that ultimately seal Edward's fate.