Christian Camargo, Justin Guarini and Roslyn Ruff are among the latest actors to join the new interracial Broadway production of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, starring Orlando Bloom and Tony Award nominee Condola Rashad as the star-crossed lovers.
Helmed by David Leaveaux, Romeo and Juliet will begin previews Aug. 24 towards a Sept. 19 opening night. Leveaux has staged Arcadia, Cyrano de Bergerac, Nine, The Glass Menagerie and Jumpers on Broadway, among others.
Camargo ("The Hurt Locker," "Twilight," All My Sons) will play Mercutio, with Guarini (Women on the Verge, "American Idol") as Paris and Ruff (The Piano Lesson, "The Help") as Lady Capulet. Also announced are Conrad Kemp ("The Girl") as Benvolio, Corey Hawkins as Tybalt and Geoffrey Owens as Prince Escalus.
In addition to Bloom ("The Lord of the Rings") as Romeo and Rashad (Stick Fly, The Trip to Bountiful) as Juliet, the cast also features the previously reported Tony Award nominee Jayne Houdyshell (Follies, Dead Accounts) as the Nurse, Tony Award winner Brent Carver (Kiss of the Spider Woman, Parade) as Friar Laurence and Tony winner Chuck Cooper (The Life; Caroline, or Change) as Lord Capulet.
According to producers, "In this new production, the members of the Montague household will be white, and the blood relatives of the Capulet family will be black. While race defines the family lineages, the original cause of the ‘ancient quarrel’, passed down by successive generations to their young, has been lost to time. Shakespeare’s dramatization of the original poem sets the two young lovers in a context of prejudice, authoritarian parents, and a never ending cycle of ‘revenge.’ Against this background, the strength of their love changes the world."
Producers have also announced that 100 tickets per performance will be set aside at $20 for purchase by students and educators.
For tickets visit Ticketmaster.com.
*OMG I'm so excited! I saw Corey's senior performance at Juilliard as Walter Lee Younger in A Raisin in the Sun and was blown away. Hands down, the BEST performance I've ever seen in theatre, and I've seen A LOT of theatre! I literally sat in my seat for five minutes after the curtain call asking myself what I'd just watched, but in the best way you could ever ask yourself that question. He is magnificent, and I have been waiting for his career to blow up since I saw him. Watch out for him and be a hipster "I knew him before anyone else" stan with me, because he is going to be HUGE. Denzel levels of huge.