Imperium I: Conspirator and II: Dictator make up two performances, each made up of three one-act plays. First we the perspective of Cicero's loyal servant, who chronicles the great orator's success before revealing the turblant fate of the Republic.
Then, in Dictator, we see Cicero struggling to restore order in Rome and coming up against the leader of the mob, Julius Caesar. Olivier and Tony Award-winning actor Richard McCabe (The Audience, Collateral) leads the cast as Cicero, opposite The Crown's Joseph Kloska as his servant Tiro.
Ancient Rome's political volatility and compelling characters chime with our own contemporary concerns. Writer Robert Harris described his 2006-15 book series as 'like West Wing in togas', and to a 2017 audience the story feels especially relevant.
Mike Poulton adapts the trilogy with a keen sense of drama. Rather than trying to compress the details of three novels into live theatre, he cuts and intensifies the plot. At a total of seven hours stage time, split over two consecutive performances, it's still an epic undertaking, but RSC artistic director Gregory Doran leads a pacy production.
Effusive reviews of the Stratford premiere hailed it 'a triumph', 'bracingly fresh' and 'an expert adaptation' so we recommend booking very promptly to ensure your chance to see this epic on the West End. Over 10,000 tickets will be available at £10 or under.
Booking for Imperium at Gielgud Theatre opens at 10am on Friday 23 March
|What||Imperium, Gielgud Theatre|
|Where||Gielgud Theatre, 35 Shaftesbury Avenue, London, W1D 6AR | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Piccadilly Circus (underground)|
14 Jun 18 – 08 Sep 18, Times vary
|Website||Click here to book now|