Dominic Cooper makes a return to the stage to play debauched 17th Century rake the Earl of Rochester alongside Jasper Britton as King Charles II, Mark Hadfield as Etherege and Ophelia Lovibond as Elizabeth Barry. Further cast include Alice Bailey Johnson as Elizabeth Malet, Will Barton as Alcock, Cornelius Booth as Harris / Huysmans / Constable, Will Merrick as Billy Downs, Lizzie Roper as Ufton/Luscombe/Big Dolly/Madam, Richard Teverson as Sackville and Nina Toussaint-White as Jane with Emily Byrt, Jonathan Hansler, Joseph Macnab, James Marchant and Lydia Piechowiak.
John Wilmot, the second Earl of Rochester is a charismatic poet, playwright and rake with a legendary appetite for excess. Yet this most ardent of hedonists is forced to reconsider everything he thinks and feels when a chance encounter with an actress at the Playhouse sends him reeling. With flair and wit, this wild romp through 1670s London offers an incisive critique of life in an age of excess.
The Libertine was first performed on tour and at the Royal Court Theatre alongside the Restoration comedy, The Man of Mode, which presented another, contemporary view of Rochester. It later transferred to Chicago’s Steppenwolf starring John Malkovich and directed by Terry Johnson before Johnny Depp took the title role in the 2004 film adaptation.
The Libertine is produced by TRH Productions, and Theatre Royal Bath Productions with Ilene Starger as Executive Producer.
All photos from Alastair Muir.