Twists on Lear and Dido at Greenwich Theatre
A play penned by Deptford's most famous son and a traditional tragedy turned on its head are set to dominate Greenwich's stage this spring.
And if you're a regular at the Crooms Hill venue, you'll be forgiven for a sense of deja vu during the next couple of weeks.
The same cast of actors, from Lazarus Theatre Company will be bringing to life two Elizabethan tragedies - King Lear, by William Shakespeare, and Dido Queen Of Carthage, by Deptford's Christopher Marlowe.
But, that's where any sense of familiarity ends.
Director and Greenwich resident Ricky Dukes promised three weeks of "big epic blockbuster plays" as his team tread the boards in repertory from May 14.
"That's what theatre is all about - taking people on a journey," said the 28-year-old.
"The way we work with classics is to have a look at them through a prism and get a different angle.
"Our Lear, for example, is a woman. She still remains King, but all the time in our production it happens to be a woman which involves so many angles thinking what a mother would be like with her daughter, and for a mother to do that to her own child.
"We have also changed the location. We are coming into post-revolution Eastern Europe.
"We are playing with two particular themes with Lear and her children, looking at great metaphors and thinking about how big the world is around her."
He added: "For Dido, the play starts in the clouds and it's saying the gods who control the world are actually quite fickle and hypocritical.
"Its got lots of humour, lots of sex and it's remarkably big and sweeping."
Ricky said he hoped Dido would appeal to the south east London community, with playwright Marlowe spending his life in Deptford in the 16th century.
"I'm a big fan of Marlowe and I went to find his grave in St Nicholas's Church, just by the river," he said.
"That was the moment I thought 'yes, we can do this'.
"Where better than Greenwich Theatre, to show this great play to an audience who may know it or an audience who have never seen it?"
While admitting rehearsing a duo of productions was intense, Ricky said they would "relish every opportunity" on their debut appearance in Greenwich.
"It's one of those things you have just got to grab with both hands," he said. "We are at Greenwich Theatre - let's just go for it."
Lear and Dido Queen of Carthage will run from May 14 to June 1. Go to greenwichtheatre.org.uk.