We are currently working on our new project, an adaptation of Middleton and Rowley's The Changeling.
The Duchess of Malfi was performed at The King's Head Theatre, Islington for four weeks in September 2009.
The Duchess, young, fashionable and recently widowed, is endlessly fascinating to the glossy-readers and the paparazzi. Her brother Ferdinand is anxious that she should avoid new sexual involvements and dubious publicity - perhaps a little too anxious. She has other ideas.
Antonio, her PA, knows every detail of the Duchess' life. She trusts, admires, and values him - he worships her. With the help of Cariola, once her nanny, now her closest friend, the Duchess marries Antonio in secret.
Ferdinand has boosted an ex-jailbird acquaintance, the highly intelligent, entirely unscrupulous Bosola, into the Duchess' household - her butler, his spy. When the Duchess begins to avoid public scrutiny and to wear suspiciously loose, unfashionable clothing, Bosola discovers the truth.
Ferdinand is outraged and jealous. His paranoia worsens, and his grip on reality slips. Bit by bit, he manipulates the media and chokes off his sister's finances, finally imprisoning her in her own home, where he can punish her to his satisfaction for daring to love another man more than himself.
Critical Reception for The Duchess of Malfi:
"intelligent pacy direction from Imogen Russell Williams"
"effectively presented by an excellent company of five principals, with sterling and well-choreographed support from Rosalind Parker and David Spence who, as two silent servants, superbly set the tone of a stifling court atmosphere"
"I welcome the originality and panache of its execution"
"As the Duchess, Katharine Gwen Pons really is quite luminous: elegant, self-contained and immaculately spoken; the picture of wronged grace"
"Imogen Russell Williams's direction is smooth and subtle, with some outstanding touches"
"There is one outstanding conceit to the production: the introduction of two silent servants or "minders"...A chillingly effective invention"
British Theatre Guide
"What a bloody royal scandal!"
"The Duchess is played splendidly by Katharine Gwen Pons"
Camden New Journal