Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Review Highlights: ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA - Southwest Shakespeare Company

Aaron Angelo, Cynnita Agent, and Cast
Photo by Devon C. Adams

highlights from local critics reviews - (click link at bottom of each review to read complete review)

Click here for more information on this production that runs through April 1

"Based on historical events, William Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra is a tragedy but also a political play and a romantic drama that centers on the doomed love affair between these two famous people. Southwest Shakespeare Company's current production is fast paced and beautiful to look at but also leaves something to be desired in the depiction of one of Shakespeare's, and history's, greatest love affairs....Co-directors Tina Packer and Debra Ann Byrd deliver a production that is swiftly moving with a spare but clean set design by Tiana Torrilhon-Wood ...As Cleopatra, Cynnita Agent is regal, noble and powerful in her delivery as she navigates her way through a range of emotions, from intense love to anger and jealousy. ...Aaron Angelo is appropriately commanding as Antony. I only wish there was more passion and a deeper connection with each other in their portrayals. Instead, we don't quite feel or see the heat that drew them together, which detracts from clearly understanding the choices they make for the majority of the play...While I wish there were more passion in this production, clearer costumes for the ensemble. and some slightly better performances, the double suicides still pack a punch and make a lasting impression of the tragic ending of the great love between Antony and Cleopatra."  - Gil Benbrook, (click here to read the complete review)

"Southwest Shakespeare Company's staging, co-directed by Producing Artistic Director Debra Ann Byrd and Tina Packer, falls short....Whether due to lack of resources or imagination, it is nevertheless a modest if uneven production, featuring periodic flashes of acting brilliance....Cynnita Agent brings refreshing vitality and elegance to her portrayal of Cleopatra. ...If Aaron Angelo's portrayal of Antony were as nuanced and compelling as Agent's, the temperature of the play would have heightened to several welcome degrees, its intensity deepened....The chemistry between him and Cleopatra and Antony might have been far more convincing rather than awkward...."  - Herbert Paine, Broadway World (click here to read the complete review)

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