New York City
Titus Andronicus is set in late-imperial Rome, where the Roman general Titus Andronicus has returned triumphant from the Gothic wars. Leading the fallen Goth queen, Tamora, and her sons as prisoners, Titus stumbles into a power struggle between the late emperors’ sons Saturnius and Bassanius. Titus fatally backs Saturnius, who promptly turns on the general and marries Tamora. The crimes against Titus’ family escalate as his sons are killed and his daughter Lavinia brutally raped by Tamora’s sons. Yet for all the violence, Shakespeare’s passionate language balances beauty and barbarity, humanity and atrocity. Darko Tresnjak directs.