Full cast announced for The Duchess of Malfi

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Tom Bateman, Mark Bonnar, Harry Lloyd and Finbar Lynch join Eve Best in John Websters great Jacobean tragedy, The Duchess of Malfi, directed by Jamie Lloyd. Eve Best last appeared at The Old Vic in London and on Broadway opposite Kevin Spacey in A Moon for the Misbegotten in the 2006/2007 Season. The Duchess of Malfi will open at The Old Vic on 28 March 2012, previewing from 17 March.

The Duchess of Malfi is set in the Italian Renaissance court of Amalfi and tells the dark, bloody story of the recently widowed Duchess (Eve Best) who secretly marries her lover and steward against the wishes of her powerful brothers. As jealousy, madness and bloodshed surround her, the Duchess retains her calm strength and dignity, even in the face of death.

Webster’s The Duchess of Malfi was written for and performed by The King’s Men in London between 1612 and 1614, and was published in 1623 under the title The Tragedy of the Duchesse of Malfy. Considered Webster’s masterpiece, its poetic language and its exploration of female courage in the face of male corruption has earned Webster a reputation as one of England’s greatest dramatists. The nightmarish violence and the play’s opening commentary on women’s sexuality and recognition of the power of psychological torment have made The Duchess of Malfi a subject for fierce debate since its beginning.