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132 West 22nd Street, New York, NY 10011
Ended 21 May 2017 after 2 months
"One of O'Neill's most haunting, visceral works, and this nightmarish staging does it full justice."
The New York Post
One of Eugene O'Neil's first major successes, The Emperor Jones is a hallucinatory descent into madness, oft compared to King Lear and Macbeth. Born out of O'Neil's damning opinion of the United States occupation of Haiti, the story follows an African American man who declares himself king of a Caribbean island. It isn't long until power goes to his head, and the native population rebel against his oppression and force him to flee.
This Irish Repertory production stars British actor Obi Abili in the lead role, returning to the New York stage after his acclaimed turn in Ivan van Hove's recent revival of Antigone, where he acted alongside Juliette Binoche.
Told mainly through flashbacks, The Emperor Jones is the story of Brutus Jones, who we first meet hacking his way through a deep jungle. He is fleeing the angry natives of a Caribbean Island, who have dethroned him as their king and are now out for his blood. We learn of Brutus' troubled past, and how, following a jailbreak in the US, he managed to scheme his way into the position of monarch on the island. Now, with his former subjects closing in, he is forced to look back on his oppressive regime and repent for his power-crazed mistakes.
Previews from: 1 March 2017
Opening night: 12 March 2017
Closing night: 21 May 2017
70 minutes, no intermission
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