In Development, 2019
Measure for Measure is set in a distant and somewhat alternative universe: a Renaissance-era Vienna where premarital sex is illegal.
Angelo, a high-ranking official, is left in charge of the state by the absent Duke. He begins enforcing all laws no matter how long they have been out of the common practice. This new reenforcement is most felt by local sex workers and within the private sexual lives of Angelo’s constituents. Long-standing brothels are shut down and a young man, Claudio, is imprisoned and sentenced to death for having sex with his fiancé before their marriage. When Isabella, Claudio’s sister and a novice nun, petitions Angelo for Claudio’s life, he offers her a deal: Angelo will free her brother if Isabella has sex with him.
FROM THE DIRECTOR, MADELINE:
"This hypocrisy and abuse of power is unsettlingly familiar to the contemporary viewer. We can easily draw a line between the fictitious Angelo and the countless government officials and execs who have abused their power for sex and dominance.
This play is further contextualized by the #MeToo movement and the rise of consent culture, as Isabella pleads to the audience when she has been offered Angelo’s deal: “To whom should I complain? Did I tell this,/ Who would believe me?”
It is alleviating to realize these issues of injustice have been in the collective conscience for a long time. More importantly, in this contemporary take, we will see the themes personalized through characters and relationships that help us empathize and recognize why these cycles have to be broken."
Produced by Experimental Bitch Presents