“It was incredibly vivid, set in a 20th century world. The most startling moment for me was the way they handled the ending, the Duke’s proposal to Isabella. I remember her smacking him directly across the face. It liberated the play for me. It felt like he was saying, directly to me: ‘Don’t just accept convention. Stay true to your instincts.’ If you stay true to the humanity of these plays, then whatever will be in the final moments of these complicated plays will be. It was a transcendent moment for me in terms of my understanding Shakespeare and the way it might be performed in the present tense.”
Drew Lichtenberg is the Literary Associate at STC and production dramaturg for Measure for Measure. He holds an MFA in Dramaturgy and Dramatic Criticism from Yale School of Drama.