Cunobelin

Wivenhoe Open-Air Shakespeare have performed in Wivenhoe since the early 1990s, and annually since 2012. This is their second visit to St Mary’s Churchyard.

Tuesday 19 June-Saturday 23 June 2018.
Evening shows at 7pm. Plus Saturday matinee 2pm.
Tickets £7.50 are on sale at Wivenhoe Bookshop, and also available at www.my-local.events.
Director Sheila Foster writes the following

Cymbeline is the tale of the “King of Britain” who, as Cunobelin, ruled the South and East Anglia, with Colchester as his base for much of his reign until his death around 43AD. The stories which Shakespeare weaves together, however, bear little relationship to what we now know about Cunobelin, some of whose coins, minted in Colchester, can be seen in the Castle Museum.

It is true that Cunobelin was brought up in Rome and a lover of the Roman Empire, but in Shakespeare’s version, following the death of his wife and the disappearance of his two eldest children, he is under the thrall of his new queen.

She aims to see her son on the throne through marrying Cymbeline’s daughter Imogen, but Imogen has secretly married Cymbeline’s ward Posthumus Leonatus. Cymbeline is furious and banishes him. The queen stirs up hatred for Rome wanting to see Britons “strut with courage” and provoking war.

The many strands of this story weave their way from Cymbeline’s court in Colchester to the mountains of Wales culminating in a breathtaking series of resolutions and reconciliations.

Imogen and Posthumus in rehearsal