• GERTRUDE – THE CRY is Howard Barker's startling and revealing response to Hamlet. Gertrude swells with a passion that counters all morality. In this new world of Elsinore, Barker defends Hamlet's reviled mother and her adulterous affair with Claudius, depicting them as lovers driven beyond reason.

  • GERTRUDE – THE CRY is Howard Barker's startling and revealing response to Hamlet.

    This entirely new story exposes the sexual nature of the crime at the heart of Shakespeare's play. Powerful poetic language, provocative ideas and rich, dark humor build a compelling and erotic study of the sexuality and secrecy that seethe below the surface of Hamlet. Gertrude swells with a passion that counters all morality. The play explores a favorite Barker theme – the lust for individuation – for freedom from the oppression of licensed behavior. In this new world of Elsinore, Howard Barker defends Hamlet's reviled mother and her adulterous affair with Claudius, depicting them as lovers driven beyond reason.

    The play had its world premiere in 2002, directed by the author, in the great hall of Elsinore Castle, Denmark as part of the annual international Hamlet Festival.

    “…there is something magnificently shameless about Barker as a writer - just as there is about Gertrude as a woman. In the end he offers us the same choice as Gertrude: plunging over the cliff of ecstasy or dying quietly in a stinking bed in a stinking hospital. We would all choose what she chooses.”

    - The Guardian

  • Gertrude, A Queen.....Pamela J. Gray
    Claudius, A Prince.....Robert Emmet Lunney
    Cascan, Servant to Gertrude.....Alex Draper
    Hamlet, An Heir.....David Barlow
    Isola, Mother of Claudius.....Kathryn Kates
    Ragusa, A Young Woman.....Meghan Leathers
    Albert, A Duke of Mecklenberg.....Bill Army

    Ensemble: Joelle Mendoza Etchart, Aashna Aggarwal, Jake Schwartzwald

    Director: Richard Romagnoli
    Stage Manager: Eric Conner Marlin
    Assistant Stage Manager: Kate Kuhle
    Assistants to the Director: Joelle Mendoza Etchart, Jake Schwartzwald

  • Lighting: Hallie Zieselman
    Set: Mark Evancho
    Costumes: Danielle Nieves
    Sound: Cormac Bluestone

  • "Radical... A provoking epic that explores politics, sexuality and power."
    - The New York Times

    "Electric and scalpel-sharp, blackly witty and quite funny... A superb cast of PTP/NYC veterans."
    - Time Out New York

    "Dark and disarmingly funny... Richard Romagnoli's smart direction makes Barker's thematically complex play accessible and entertaining. The actors effectively bring out the searing comedy hidden in Barker's dark words. Gray plays Gertrude with an elegant ferocity, reveling in the ecstasy of instinct... This production offers tremendous rewards."
    - TheaterMania

    "Shocking. Intense. As usual, PTP/NYC’s cast and casting is stellar. The company has some of the most expressive, multi-dimensional, powerful actors in the city. Pamela J. Gray is bold, fearless and stunning... After seeing the incredibly entertaining Gertrude—The Cry, it is likely you will never again see Hamlet in the same light. Director Richard Romagnoli has once again taken a Howard Barker play and delivered it exactly as it was meant to be."
    - Theater Pizzazz

    "Provocative. Stunning. I guarantee you will never see Hamlet’s Gertrude the same way ever again."
    - New York Theater Review

    "Strong performances and solid directing… all come through with flying colors. Fascinating."
    - Talkin’ Broadway

    "Pamela J. Gray is both ravishing and haughty."
    - Georgehunka.com

    "A real psycho-sexual masterpiece."
    - Electronic Link Journal

  • The setting is an abandoned church in a Eastern European country. A 13th-century fresco has just been unearthed --if it proves to predate the works of Giotto, it could explode accepted notions about European art. Without warning, a group of armed refugees barricade themselves inside the church, leading to a shocking conclusion.

  • PENTECOST was first produced at The Other Place, Stratford-Upon-Avon, in October 1994. The play is set in an abandoned church in an unnamed Eastern European country shortly after the fall of the Berlin Wall. A 13th-century fresco has just been discovered by a young curator from the country’s national museum. If proved to predate the works of Giotto, as suspected, the work could explode accepted notions about European art. In Act 1, the authenticity of the fresco is passionately debated in a prolonged and provocative discussion that ranges from the fallacy of cultural relativism to the increasing disillusionment of Eastern European society in the post-Soviet order.

    Then, without warning, a group of armed and desperate refugees barricade themselves inside the church, taking hostage the Western art experts inside. The refugees range in ethnicity from Palestinian to Kurd to Bosnian and the second act details increasingly tense negotiation and argumentation, leading to a shocking and visceral conclusion.

    In a review titled “A Masterwork in any Language," Paul Taylor, the critic of The Independent, wrote of the play’s first production:

    “With great wit and empathy, Edgar uses the fresco, its questionable status and the competing ethnic, national and religious interest-groups who flock round it, as a piquant vantage point from which to look at the ironies and agonies of post-Communist Eastern Europe and at conflicting attitudes towards art.”

  • Leo Katz.....Alex Draper
    Oliver Davenport.....Jonathan Tindle
    Gabriella Pecs.....Tosca Giustini
    Father Sergei Bojovic.....Larry Nathanson
    Father Petr Karolyi.....Christo Grabowski
    Mikhail Czaba.....Matthew Ball
    Pusbas.....Martina Bonolis
    Anna Jedlicova.....Nina Silver
    Toni Newsome.....Chelsea Melone

    THE REFUGEES:
    Mari Vial-Golden
    Rishabh Kashyap
    Aubrey Dube
    Lilli Stein
    Erica Furgiuele
    Nick Hemerling
    Joseph Varca
    Tom Beyer
    Caitlin Duffy
    Lily Balsen

    Soldiers/Restorers/Commanders/Police:
    Jake Schwartzwald, Chelsea Melone, Caitlin Duffy, Nick Hemerling, Erica Furgiuele

    Director: Cheryl Faraone
    Stage Manager: Evangeline Rose Whitlock
    Assistant Stage Manager: Kat Rother
    Assistant to the Director: Aashna Aggarwal

    Lighting: Hallie Zieselman
    Set: Mark Evancho
    Costumes: Adrienne Carlile
    (original design, Jule Emerson)
    Sound: Aubrey Dube

  • "The final moments of the play are as stimulating to the senses as the first parts are stimulating to the mind. Equally engaging to the mind and the senses."
    - Theatre Is Easy

    "Deeply compelling. As always — the Potomac Theatre Project has provided an excellent production of a work of provocative ideas."
    - Talkin’ Broadway

    "Astonishing! Rich in ideas and brought to life with eloquence by PTP/NYC, Pentecost’s exploration of the intersection between national identity and violence very much reflect the time it was written while remaining relevant for the present uncertain age."
    - nytheater now