Reimagining Desdemona as a sexual libertine

DESDEMONA…A Play About A Handkerchief, by the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel, will be staged by Galway’s Selkie Theatre in the Town Hall Studio next week.

In this comic re-imagining of Shakespeare’s Othello, Desdemona’s fate hinges on the whereabouts of the strawberry-embroidered handkerchief given to her by her husband. Vogel also portrays Desdemona as a volatile, sexually charged woman who, having slept with the entire encampment, enjoys boasting about it all to local prostitute Bianca.

Underneath the humour, Vogel skilfully deconstructs a profoundly misogynistic - but in many ways not unfamiliar - 16th century world.

The play is directed by George B Miller and is part of Selkie’s WomensWork Project, a series designed to showcase the work of women theatre artists. The cast includes Lisa Daly (Desdemona ), Claire Fox (Emelia ), and Angela Ryan (Bianca ).

Desdemona…A Play About A Handkerchief runs from Wednesday October 8 to Saturday 11 at 8.30pm. Tickets are €15/12, with a €10 preview on the Wednesday. For tickets contact the Town Hall on 091 - 569777.

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