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The Duchess of Malfi - Part 1 of The Face of Decadence Season


  • St Giles-in-the-Fields 60 Saint Giles High Street London, England, WC2H United Kingdom (map)

Scena Mundi’s first foray into Jacobean tragedy, our production ofWebster’s Duchess of Malfi will bring to life the dark, furtive and macabre world of Webster in the stunning setting of St Giles in the Fields, in the heart of the West End.

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Our artistically ambitious season will explore the aesthetics of decadence through two major art works. Before descending into the abyss of the Victorian underworld in the autumn, we are travelling to the refined yet corrupt Italian courts of the Renaissance as seen by one of the Jacobean era’s most distinctive dramatists, John Webster.

Recently widowed, the young Duchess of Malfi loves and is loved by her steward Antonio. Desirous not to see life pass her by, she marries him despite the orders of her insidious brothers, unleashing a whirlwind ofjealousy, madness and murder.  

One of the few female-led classical plays, The Duchess of Malfi  is set in a decaying world where the beauty of the palazzi, rich Renaissance fabrics and gold cannot hide the rampant ugliness and corruption of  the protagonists. 

Cruelty and beauty mix in a strange way to create a heady cocktail ofrefinement and macabre, seduction and horror. True to its standards ofexcellent acting and insightful textual exploration, Scena Mundi have decided to stage their Duchess of Malfi in a site specific environment which will enhance the dark disintegration at the heart of the play. 

Led by our critically acclaimed actors who have made ScenaMundi one of the most exciting young companies in London, our Duchess of Malfi  will show you “THE SKULL BENEATH THE SKIN” which, in the words of TS Eliot, sums up the world of John Webster.

Directed by Cecilia Dorland

Cast includes: Rupert Bates, Pip Brignall, Jack Christie, Jess Murphy, Martin Prest, Joanna Simmonett, Thomas Winsor