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In rehearsal: Bakkhai

Published 13 July 2015

The Almeida Theatre’s forthcoming production of Bakkhai may feature just three actors and a chorus but, judging by images from the rehearsal room, they come with a lot of baggage.

And by baggage we don’t mean the emotional kind – though we’re sure there’s plenty of that too, this is a Greek tragedy after all – but actual luggage.

Wheelie suitcases, rucksacks, totes, holdalls, briefcases, they can all be found in Marc Brenner’s rehearsal images.

Anyone worried that the cast – which is led by Skyfall star Ben Whishaw, who does seem to be standing suspiciously close to the fire exit – were planning to do a runner prior to the show’s opening at the Islington venue can rest assured; the aforementioned bags seem to be filled only with foliage. Now they’re not going to get far with that are they?

So let’s assume that everything is right on track for 23 July when Whishaw and his co-stars Bertie Carvel and Kevin Harvey take to the Almeida Theatre’s stage for the show’s first performance.

Adapted by Anne Carson and directed by James Macdonald, Euripides’ visceral tragedy charts the story of Pentheus as he bans the wild ritualistic worship of the god Dionysos.

You can take a look at how preparations for the production are going – and, perhaps, get a few ideas for a new holiday suitcase – in our gallery above.


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