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Across The Pond

David Oyelowo to Star in Othello Off-Broadway with Daniel Craig

The British actor and star of the motion picture “Selma,” David Oyelowo, will return to his roots in a production of Othello Off-Broadway at the New York Theater Workshop (NYTW) alongside Daniel Craig, who is probably best known as the most recent James Bond in the franchise films. Oyelowo has played supporting roles in the films Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011), Middle of Nowhere (2012), Lincoln (2012), and gave a stunning portrayal of Louis Gaines in The Butler. However, you may not have known that he started his career in theatre back in 1999 with the Royal Shakespeare Company and now has his own theatre company called Inservice.

Across the pond, Oyelowo is best known for his stage performance as King Henry VI in the Royal Shakespeare Company’s 2001 productions of Shakespeare’s trilogy of plays about the king as a part of its season This England: The Histories. In a mOyelowo & Craigajor landmark for color-blind casting, Oyelowo was the first Black actor to play an English king in a major production of Shakespeare. Although this casting choice was initially criticised by some in the media, Oyelowo’s performance was critically acclaimed and later won the 2001 Ian Charleson Award for best performance by an actor under 30 in a classical play. – source

Othello will be directed by the Tony Award-winning Fun Home director Sam Gold, who said he chose Othello because it interested him and the actors. However, it was Craig that sought out Gold because he wanted work on a project together. It ended up being Othello which led Gold to reach out to Oyelowo through a friend. The actors did a table read of the play and it took off from there.

According to the artistic director at NYTW, the company has not presented anything by Shakespeare since 1990. This production definitely feels right since the company is known for producing great works that focus more on direction and telling the story than anything else. Recall that this is same theatre that gave us Dael Orlandersmith’s FOREVER. This is bound to be great and we cannot wait to be in the house. The theater has not yet announced the production dates or further information on the run. As soon as it’s released, you’ll find it right here!

Written By

Drew Shade is a theatre artist and enthusiast who fosters artistic diversity and excellence for the love of Black theatre artists. He is the Founder/Creative Director of Broadway Black, Off-Book Podcast & The Antonyo Awards. “Have a belief in yourself that is bigger than anyone’s disbelief.” – August Wilson


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