This thrilling production from the Royal Shakespeare Company received tremendous acclaim when it opened in Stratford-upon-Avon in Spring 2013. Now, one of the UK’s finest actors, Ian McDiarmid reprises his astonishing performance as Galileo, leading a huge ensemble cast in this theatrical tour-de-force.
The year is 1609 and a brilliant Italian scientist is about to make a discovery that will change the world. Observing the night sky using the recently-invented telescope, he sees the solar system with a clarity never before experienced by astronomers and realises that the earth orbits the sun.
When Galileo’s opponents convince the Pope that these new findings pose a threat to religious dogma and may spark unrest and civil disobedience, he is denounced by the Inquisition as a heretic and forced to publicly denounce his theories…
This much-acclaimed translation of Brecht’s masterpiece by RSC Writer in Residence Mark Ravenhill is directed by Roxana Silbert, Artistic Director of Brimingham Rep, who recently directed Dunsinane, Measure For Measure and Richard III for the RSC.
Ian McDiarmid is perhaps best known for his iconic role as Emperor Palpatine in George Lucas's epic Star Wars films. Other films include Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow with Johnny Depp, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Gorky Park and Dragonslayer. Recent leading theatre roles include Timon of Athens for Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Emperor and Galilean for the National Theatre, John Gabriel Borkman for The Donmar Warehouse and Six Characters in Search of an Author for the Chichester Festival Theatre.