To commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of the famous English playwright, Kate Reid, a student at St John’s College, University of Cambridge, is joined by a small cast in Measure for Measure at the Cambridge Arts Theatre.
The play which opens on Wednesday (February 10) and runs for four days until Saturday (February 13) is staged by the University of Cambridge’s drama group, the Marlowe Society, which has launched the careers of some of Britain’s renowned actors including Rachel Weisz and Stephen Fry.
Ahead of opening night, Miss Reid who is currently in her third year studying English Literature, talks about balancing studying and rehearsals as well as playing several characters in the production.
Her main role is the part of Provost who runs the prison and is responsible for carrying out all of villain Lord Angelo’s orders.
She said: “It is very exciting to be working in a professional venue with a professional director.
“It’s been tough to balance a rehearsal schedule of around 35 hours a week with our full-time studies, but it’s worth it for the incredible opportunity.
“The production has a small cast and most people are playing two or three different parts, so we have to be versatile.
“At one point in the play, I switch to a different character and have to change costume in under a minute – practically that’s quite a challenge!”
Director Tom Litter updates Shakespeare’s Tudor world by setting the play in Vienna at the dawn of the 20th century, where by day it’s a city of coffee shops and smart society, but by night becomes a hotbed of sex and dreams.
The government decides to wage war on vice and the plot unravels as the city’s straight-laced new ruler falls victim to temptation.
Miss Reid’s hardwork has previously won her a place with the Cambridge American Stage Tour (CAST) performing Shakespeare to audiences across the Eastern United States as part of a troupe made up of Cambridge’s most talented actors, directors, designers and technicians.
After graduating, the ambitious young actress has set her sights on applying to drama school.
Tickets are available on the Cambridge Arts Theatre website .