Stafford Gatehouse Theatre announce a new look Shakespeare Festival as tickets go on sale for The Merchant of Venice

Following last year’s critically-acclaimed five-star production of Macbeth, Stafford Festival Shakespeare will return to Stafford Castle this year with something very special.

Stafford Gatehouse Theatre together with Freedom Leisure have announced that the production for Stafford Festival Shakespeare 2019 will be The Merchant of Venice.

This year will be a first as the play has never been performed before at Stafford in the 29 years of the festival.


By William Shakespeare

‘All that glisters is not gold’

The privileged heiress Portia is seeking a husband by unconventional means: a suitor merely has to solve a little puzzle to win her hand in marriage. Spendthrift Bassanio longs to be considered by Portia, but how can he impress her, when he is so reckless with the money he borrows? If his close friend Antonio can lend him no more money, who else might be willing to lend a sum on his behalf? And at what cost…?

In this thrilling new production, Shakespeare’s controversial masterpiece is transported to 1950s New York, a city where communities are divided by wealth and religion. Featuring the iconic figure of Shylock, one of Shakespeare’s most complex characters, The Merchant of Venice is a compelling story of money, love, and prejudice.

Speaking at the launch recently, Production Manager Richard Goodman said “This production is going to be enticing. We have such a treat in store for our audience this year! it’s a play which has everything, and It looks at issues that are just as relevant now as they were when the play was first performed. On top of that it has one of Shakespeare’s most iconic characters in Shylock.”

“It is going to be a great opportunity to see this play performed for the first time at Stafford Castle and in a vibrant and unique telling of the story.”

The Merchant of Venice will open on June 27th and run until July 13th at Stafford Castle.