Ivan Alovisio is currently playing the role of Lussurioso in Cheek by Jowl’s European tour of The Revenger’s Tragedy. Having already performed in Milan and London, the production will soon head to Paris for its final performances (following the unfortunate cancellation of their Madrid performances). Ivan spoke to us about the production and his role in the acclaimed theatre company’s most recent endeavour.
Thomas Middleton wrote The Revenger’s Tragedy in the early 1600s. What makes it still relevant to a modern-day audience?
This is the first time that I have had the opportunity to act in a work by Thomas Middleton, and it has been great fun. And even though it isn’t Shakespeare, it still manages to enthrall and excite modern audiences.
You are playing the part of Lussurioso. Could you tell me a bit about the character and how he fits within the wider plot?
Lussurioso (the name says it all) is the son of the Duke and heir to the throne in a court characterised by ambition, bastard children, stepmothers and “useless” people.
Without giving too much away of the ending, through a series of events including his falling in love with a young virgin, he ends up becoming the Duke. But this is to his detriment, as the plotting of Vindice brings an end to everything and leads to crisis.
Do you enjoy playing a villain? What methods have you used to inhabit your character and understand his motivations
Whatever the role, through method I try to approach the creative process with openness and curiosity towards the character I have to play.
The production is in Italian with surtitles. How will you make sure that the audience connects with your character in spite of the language barrier?
Strangely, every time I have seen a foreign play performed in Italy, I have appreciated the relationship between the characters and the story more than usual. This is because the surtitles provide the spectator with further understanding.
More information about this tour and Cheek by Jowl’s other productions can be found here.
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